donald trump memes

Images Via @zarzarbinkss/@trumpdraws

Donald Trump memes are making the internet great again

Four years is a lifetime on the internet.


David Covucci

Internet Culture

Posted on Feb 9, 2017   Updated on May 25, 2021, 1:05 am CDT

In the aftermath of Donald Trump‘s astonishing election night win, one user took to 4chan to express his amazement over the evening.

“I’m fucking trembling out of excitement brahs. We actually elected a meme as president.”

He had no idea how immediately true that proclamation would be.

Since Trump won the 2016 election, the left who has adopted memes as a potent way to attack the president. Pretty much everything he has done since taking office has been meme-ed to hell and back, hoping to get under the president’s skin. These memes are making the internet great again.

The best Donald Trump memes

Trump memes: May 2017

Donal Trump tweets covfefe (May 31)

Many people were concerned about how Donald Trump’s off-the-cuff use of Twitter would affect America—and it has already been some ride—but no one could have predicted what happened on the second to last day of May.

Before going to bed, Trump composed a tweet that he never finished, then hit send.

Covfefe entered the lexicon, and the internet (and sidewalk chalkboard signs) was never the same.

donald trump memes
Screengrab via rumpfshaker/Twitter

It’s a phrase with staying power, and it quickly became the punchline to almost every good internet meme.

donald trump memes
Screengrab via rumpfshaker/Twitter

But perhaps worse than all, it took down the happiest account on the internet. After putting a ‘Covfefe’ hat for sale in the We Rate Dogs store, @dog_rates offered the proceeds to Planned Parenthood. Conservatives were upset that the man behind the account was liberal. So he apologized, which upset the left.

Anyway, this just about sums everything up.

donald trump memes
Image via Doug Exeter/Twitter

Trump’s handshake power grab is no match against France’s Macron (May 25)

On the campaign trail, Donald Trump had presented himself as the exemplar of masculinity and virility he believes himself to be.  Just, remember the primary debates. Or don’t.

Trump believes being a man matters most, which is why, perhaps, in their first meeting, newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron felt that he needed to speak to Trump in that same language. And with all absurd male-on-male courting rituals, no first impressions counts more than the handshake.

The internet was thoroughly impressed by the effort.

Donald Trump touched a glowing orb in Saudi Arabia, and Twitter lost it (May 21) 

One of Trump’s biggest selling points to his base was that he was not part of a cabal of secretly globalist leaders who would meet in private to determine the fate of the world.  No, that was his opponent, Hillary Clinton. Which is part of why everyone lost it when a photo emerged of Trump participating in what looks like a downright globalist cabal initiation ritual in his first visit abroad.

In reality, he was just helping the Saudis open their new Global Center for Combating Extremist Ideology. Or was he?

How Spongebob Squarepants became the perfect meme to mock Donald Trump (May 16)

One of the more frustrating aspects of Donald Trump is that he’s the “I’m rubber you’re glue” president. Almost nothing people say to him has the desired effect. No insult, burn, or dig is going to have a meaningful impact.

People on social media were at their wits’ ends—until the perfect meme arrived. All mocking Spongebob does is repeat the exact words back at whoever says them, showing how stupid they sound.

It’s exactly what those wishing to spoof the president need.

Someone even remade Trump in Spongebob’s likeness.

Trump proclaims he’s ‘a very active president’—and Twitter isn’t buying it (May 12)

In the beginning and middle of May, the Trump White House was in astounding disarray. With Trump dismissing James Comey unexpectedly, his surrogates had no idea what to say and went with the explanation that was given in Comey’s dismissal letter.

Unfortunately for them, Trump went told a different story. The same pattern repeated itself with the Russia-confidential information scandalTo put an end to it, Trump wanted people to know that, hey, he does a lot of stuff and shit happens and that’s your problem, not his.

As a very active President with lots of things happening, it is not possible for my surrogates to stand at podium with perfect accuracy!….

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 12, 2017

Most of the internet thought it sounded like he was about to hawk a male enhancement pill or some other medication.

To be fair, he does see those ads often on Fox News.

You’ll never be able to unsee this frog on Donald Trump’s chin (May 3)

You almost never know what is about to come out of the president’s mouth. Americans have braced themselves for any potential weird outburst and prepped for the worst. But no one expected to see a frog appear—except for artist Mike Mitchell. He saw Trump’s mouth and chin as a sort of canvas for a Futurama-like Hypnotoad drawing, and in doing so, freaked the entire internet out.

No one knows if it’s more comforting seeing Trump’s words come out of the mouth of a frog, but it can’t be any worse than normal.

Trump memes: April 2017

Donald Trump declares May 1 as Loyalty Day—and Twitter is loving the irony (April 29)

Donald Trump has been long speculated to make his subordinates declare loyalty, but in advance of May 1, he tweeted that he wanted the whole country to declare themselves loyal to America. Twitter did not miss that goodness.

For whatever it’s worth, this is another example of something previous presidents did that didn’t raise a kerfuffle. Blame Twitter.  

trump memes

Trump memes: March 2017

The Trumps are exactly like the Bluths from ‘Arrested Development’ (March 24)

“Now the story of a wealthy family who lost everything and the one son who had no choice but to keep them all together. It’s … The Trump Presidency.”

Sort of. While the parallels aren’t perfect—there’s no matriarch of the Trumps that matches Lucile—a writer noticed some eerie parallels between the saga of Donald’s family and the escapades of the Bluths. Trump’s Obamacare repeal debacle, Politico reporter Dan Diamond pointed out, was just like the one where the Bluths tried to build a house.

Once you start seeing it, it’s everywhere. Ivanka as Lindsay, the blustery Gob as Donald, Jared Kushner as George Michael. Even Paul Ryan, repeatedly giving up on Trump, mimics Michael repeatedly driving away from the family, only to come back again and again.  

Trump had the time of his life in a parked truck, and #TrumpTruck was born (March 23)

It’s easy to forget that Donald Trump is, behind the bluster and bravado, still a person, with normal urges.

When he invited a coalition of truckers to the White House to discuss healthcare reform, they brought a big rig onto the grounds. Trump, like any one of us would, wanted to get behind the wheel and toot the horn. And he did. It could have been a touching and humanizing moment for a president many demonize, but because it happened as he was unaware the vote on his signature healthcare bill was being delayed, it instead became a meme.

Trump memes: February 2017

The internet is destroying this photo of 13 Republicans giving a thumbs up (Feb. 17)

A lot has been written about the sheer male whiteness of Donald Trump’s cabinet and closest advisers.

A photo op after Trump signed legislation to repeal the Streams Protections Rule (a rule designed to protect streams), really showed how glaring it is. People were swift to point out the extreme lack of diversity.

People were also quick to completely burn the group on Twitter.

Tiny Trump meme cuts the president down to size (Feb. 17)

The president is very, very conscious of his image, and that certainly hasn’t been lost on the internet. So whenever any random tweeter or redditor comes up with an idea to rile the president up by taking his stature down a bit, everyone jumps in. The results are often inspired, like when the idea behind Tiny Trump started percolating. The premise is simple: Take the president and make him seem as small as possible, especially in front of world leaders.

President says White House runs like a ‘fine-tuned machine,’ gets roasted for it (Feb. 16)

In one of his first press conferences as president, besot by reports of a chaotic administration, Donald Trump said his administration is running like a “fine-tuned machine.”

In fact, he said it more than once..

Twitter did not agree. Twitter, way more than once, did not agree at all.

Trump declares drugs are cheaper than the candy bars—and the internet rejoices (Feb. 16)

On the campaign trail, Donald Trump portrayed himself as a man of the people. His opponents attempted to paint him as an out-of-touch billionaire.

There’s really only one was to prove it. Who would be more likely to know the cost of a Snickers at a 7-11? A man of the people, or an out-of-touch billionaire.

“Drugs,” Donald Trump said, “are becoming cheaper than candy bars.”

Justin Trudeau’s shade of Donald Trump’s handshake is already legendary (Feb. 13) 

Donald Trump has finally started inviting world leaders to the White House and the results—at least for the meme community—have been yuge.

After his exaggerated handshake with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, all eyes were on the next incoming dignitary, who just so happened to the super smooth Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Trudeau did not let his legions of internet fans down.

‘Trumpwave’ emerges as the alt-right’s meme-heavy soundtrack (Feb. 10)

The new soundtrack of the alt-right, a loosely organized white supremacist online movement, Trumpwave takes synth-heavy beats from the president’s previous heyday, the 1980s, and overlays Donald Trump quotes on them.  basically turning any New Order song into a Make America Great sex jams.

Seriously. Just give it a listen.

Trump’s ‘SEE YOU IN COURT’ is the great new Twitter threat (Feb. 10)

Almost to the minute after it was announced, Donald Trump’s executive order banning travelfrom seven Muslim-majority nations has been held up in court.

As the judges have ruled again and again against the order, Trump has gotten testier and testier until, when the 9th Circuit issued a devastating ruling against the president, he unleashed online.

Many online noted the similarity to a very popular Twitter user with very prescient, very presidential-sounding tweets from years before.

President Trump: ‘D’ should be ‘easy’ (Feb. 8)

Ever since Donald Trump became a serious presidential contender and declared Twitter to be his preferred mode of communication, the entire internet has become amateur Trump-ologists, parsing his every character for meaning. 

But on Feb. 8, the president left everybody stumped with this tweet. 

Everyone eventually realized that the president meant that the courts had an easy decision before them in regards to his travel ban, but not before everyone took it to mean something very, very sexual.

Trump’s ‘I call my own shots’ tweet spurs hilarious new meme (Feb. 7)

After the (FAKE NEWS!) New York Times declared that Steve Bannon pulled a fast one on Trump, sneaking his way on to the National Security Council, Trump took to Twitter to let the part of the populace that reads his tweets know that he is the one who knocks. Or decides. Or whatever. 

And just what does the “I call my own shots, largely based on an accumulation of data” mean?

Twitter had its way with that one. 

Trump memes: January 2017

President Trump shows off his childlike artwork in ‘Trump Draws’ GIFs (Jan. 31)

One of the joys of small children is they are so sincerely satisfied with and impressed by their own ability to complete the simplest of tasks, no matter how enfeebled and downright bad their actual efforts are.

‘Smart Trump’ is the Roll Safe spinoff meme that’s going to be yuge (Jan. 31)

Back in March, Donald Trump told MSNBC that he would make an excellent foreign policy expert because ” I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things.”

Make you think, doesn’t?

Kinda like this guy.

That’s the Roll Safe meme, which features a picture of an idiot dude pointing to his head because he knows his logic is unassailable, because, look, here’s my brain.

As Mugato said in Zoolander, “He’s absolutely right.”

An old tweet about ‘favorite travel memories’ from Trump Hotels draws fresh mockery (Jan. 29)

The only way to ever be 100-percent successful on social media is to use a secret government supercomputer to simulate every possible iteration of every possible scenario that could ever play out down the road before you tweet, or never tweet.

Trump Hotels took neither of those routes (understandable back in 2012), but when stories of Muslims being handcuffed and detained at airports became the top story of the president’s first weekend in office, someone found an old Trump Hotel tweet asking everyone to tell them their favorite travel stories.

This Trump Photoshop battle is for those who like big butts (and cannot lie) (Jan. 29)

On one of Trump’s first trips as president, he bounded up the stairs of Marine One, and one thing about that stuck out to web denizens.

Well, two things. Ass cheek left, and ass check right.

Come for the Crying Jordans splayed across the president’s butt, stay for the outstanding Simpsons reference.

New meme insists Trump’s inauguration speech plagiarized more than ‘Bee Movie’ (Jan. 25) 

A lot of liberals had jitters watching Trump be sworn in as president because many of them had a completely ridiculous fear that the goal of his presidency was to bring about a cataclysmic culture clash that would portend the collapse of society, all while a terrifying nuclear threat loomed over everything. 

Then Donald Trump kinda plagiarized Bane, and everyone realized sometimes reality is stranger than fiction.

To add some damn levity to the end of the world, people imagined what Trump’s inaugural address might be like if he stole from other famous movies characters.

‘Here’s the livestream of Trump’s inauguration’ meme prepares for the apocalypse (Jan. 20)

A faux SEO play disguised as a trenchant commentary on the state of affairs, mixed with a dash of nihilism, all set to the tune of an unexpected redirect.

Everyone has a theory about what was on Donald Trump’s notepad (Jan. 18)

One of the oldest, inviolable rules of the internet is to never ever, ever, ever share something that can let people’s imaginations run wild. If you want to tell someone you are hard at work on a new house, show them the actual blueprints. If you are cooking a meal, the picture needs to be of what’s in the pan.

Otherwise, people will just assume it involves dicks.

This is also true even if you are the president-elect of the United States. If you want people to know you are working on your inauguration speech in the days leading up to inauguration (which, like, first off, yea, we all kinda assumed that’s what you’d be doing anyway), don’t obscure the damn text of your speech.

Otherwise, people will just assume it involves dicks.



Trump memes: December 2016

Some genius Photoshopped Donald Trump’s face onto Queen Elizabeth—and it weirdly works (Dec. 12)

I’m not entirely sure what further explanation you are expecting to read here. 

Someone used a computer program that lets you digitally manipulate images to blend the face of the president of the United States onto the face of England’s reigning monarch, and the finished product satisfies in an unexpected fashion. The account had been around for months, but it blew up in mid-December.

Four years is a lifetime on the internet. Here’s to all the memes to come.

Editor’s note: This article is regularly updated for relevance.

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*First Published: Feb 9, 2017, 2:44 pm CST