This has caused a massive uproar in MAGA world.
Conservatives expressed strong dissatisfaction with former President Donald Trump’s response to a question about transgender individuals during his recent interview with Megyn Kelly.
Currently, Trump holds a significant lead as the frontrunner in the 2024 Republican presidential primary, outpacing his competitors by a considerable margin in the race for a second term in the White House. According to FiveThirtyEight’s national polling average, Trump enjoys approximately 55 percent support from likely Republican voters, while Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, his closest rival, commands only around 14 percent.
During his interview with former Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly, which occurred years after his well-known derogatory remarks about her following a 2015 presidential debate she moderated, a critical moment emerged when Kelly raised the topic of transgender people. She reminded Trump that in 2016, he had stated that Caitlyn Jenner, an outspoken transgender Republican and former Olympian, could use the women’s restrooms at Trump Tower.
When pressed on whether he believed a person could “transition” from one gender to another, Trump’s response was hesitant and somewhat evasive, which drew criticism from numerous conservatives online.
In transcript provided by Newsweek, Trump stated, “In my opinion…I think part of it is birth. Can the man give birth? No. Although they’ll come up with some answer to that also. I heard just the other day, they have a way that now the man can give birth. No, I would say. Yeah, I’ll continue my stance on that.”
In another part of the interview, the former president indicated that his views on the subject had evolved since 2016 and argued that discussions about transgender individuals were relatively new at the time. He rejected the notion that he had “reversed” his previous positions, asserting that the matter had been too insignificant at the time to form a fully developed opinion, and he believed his presidential policies should speak for themselves.
Notably, opposition to transgender individuals has gained prominence among conservatives in recent years, particularly among those on the far-right of the political spectrum. This heightened focus on the issue has led to calls for boycotts of well-known companies and brands that have shown support for the transgender community in their marketing campaigns, though these efforts have had limited long-term impact.
Early in his political career, Trump expressed more inclusive views on gender and sexuality matters, including his support for gay marriage prior to the 2016 election. However, his positions became less inclusive during his presidency, highlighted by his signing of a ban on openly transgender individuals serving in the military, a policy that was later reversed by President Joe Biden.
Among the conservative reactions to the interview, Jon Root, a contributor to Turning Point USA, criticized Trump’s response to the question as “extremely disappointing” in a post on X, the platform previously known as Twitter, on Friday.
Trump’s answer to the question: “Can a man become a woman?” is downright terrible…
— Jon Root (@JonnyRoot_) September 15, 2023