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Thursday morning, Trump ranted about the hosts of Morning Joe to his 33 million followers. The vitriolic and sexist remarks were just his latest battle in Trump’s war on the media. He’s faced substantial criticism for this comments from both sides of the aisle, and longtime critic Rowling wasn’t going to let this one pass her by either. But she took a subtle approach to her commentary: She simply screengrabbed the two tweets from Trump’s account, then added a simple quote about men in power, attributed to Abraham Lincoln.
'Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power.' Abraham Lincoln pic.twitter.com/vkJnlXbnXg— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) June 29, 2017
Just one little catch: That quote wasn’t even from the former president. Despite being widely credited to Lincoln, most people attribute the words to Robert Ingersoll, who was describing Lincoln in an 1884 essay. Similar ones have also been attributed to Horatio Alger Jr. and Thomas Carlyle—the former also in a publication about Lincoln, hence the confusion about the source.
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Still, the misappropriated quote has been retweeted almost 25,000 times. As one of her followers pointed out, Rowling could just as easily have lifted one of her own quotes for just this occasion:
Both prolific Twitter users, Trump and Rowling haven’t formally sparred just yet, but Rowling has openly lambasted the president’s debate performance, attitudes toward women, speaking style, and his vice president’s stance on refugees, just as she’s consoled his critics. We’re certain she’ll dig up more than a few quotes to hurl his way over the course of this presidency—but maybe next time she’ll double check her sources first.
Monica Riese now serves as the Daily Dot’s director of production, having previously been the publication’s entertainment editor and assistant managing editor. She is based in Austin, Texas, and formerly contributed to the Austin Chronicle, where her breaking news work was recognized by the Association of Alternative Newsweeklies.