Trump Hits NASCAR's Bubba Wallace: 'Just Another Hoax'


President Donald Trump tore into NASCAR and driver Bubba Wallace in a Monday morning tweet accusing both of mishandling recent controversies amid nationwide civil and racial unrest.

Trump asked whether Wallace had apologized for the recent flap about a “noose” found in his garage and also hit racing’s governing body for its ban on Confederate battle flag imagery, which has turned off some fans of the sport.

“Has @BubbaWallace apologized to all of those great NASCAR drivers & officials who came to his aid, stood by his side, & were willing to sacrifice everything for him, only to find out that the whole thing was just another HOAX?” Trump wrote on Twitter Monday.

“That & Flag decision has caused lowest ratings EVER!” the president added.

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The reference to the flag was an apparent reference to NASCAR’s decision to ban Confederate flags from events and properties.

The ban was instituted on June 10.

Reports of a supposed noose found in the Talladega garage of Wallace, the sport’s only back driver, overtook NASCAR beginning on June 22.

A thorough FBI investigation found the so-called noose to be a garage door pull rope that had been in place since last year.

NASCAR President Steve Phelps said in a statement that the perpetrator or perpetrators of the incident would be banned from the sport, and added that “there is no place for racism in NASCAR.”

On what ultimately ended up being a garage door pull rope, he said the apparent act of racism “only strengthens our resolve to make this sport open and welcoming to all.”

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“The drivers feel very strongly that they want to show their support of Bubba,” the NASCAR president said.

“He’s a member of the NASCAR community. He’s a member of the NASCAR family. The outpouring of support over the last couple weeks from our drivers, from the industry as a whole, from the fans, has been phenomenal. Whatever happens, it’s going to happen organically. It will be heartfelt. I’m looking forward to whatever they come up with,” Phelps said.

Video of NASCAR drivers rallying around Wallace went viral online.

The FBI’s conclusion that no crime occurred did not deter Wallace from going on a media tour in which he claimed that the rope on the garage door was still a “straight-up noose.”

On June 24, Wallace told CNN’s Don Lemon that no matter what the investigation found, his mind would not be changed.

“I’ve been racing all of my life,” he said. “We’ve raced out of hundreds of garages that never had garage pulls like that. So people that want to call it a garage pull and put out all the videos and photos of knots being as their evidence, go ahead, but from the evidence that we have — and I have — it’s a straight-up noose.”

“Whether tied in 2019 or whatever, it was a noose,” Wallace told CNN. “So it wasn’t directed at me, but somebody tied a noose. That’s what I’m saying.”

He later shifted gears, saying in a statement June 24, “It’s been an emotional few days. First off, I want to say how relieved I am that the investigation revealed that this wasn’t what we feared it was. I want to thank my team, NASCAR and the FBI for acting swiftly and treating this as a real threat.

“I think we’ll gladly take a little embarrassment over what the alternatives could have been.”

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany spoke about Trump’s call for an apology from Wallace during an interview with Fox News on Monday.

“What the president is making is a broader point that this rush to judgment on the facts, before the facts, is unacceptable,” McEnany said.

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