Rep. Chris Collins, a member of President-elect Donald Trump's transition team, compared civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis to "a spoiled chimp who got too many bananas and rights."
Collected via Facebook, January 2017
On 16 January 2017, Politicops.com, a fake news web site associated with the “hybrid news/satire platform” Newslo, posted a report stating that Rep. Chris Collins (R-New York), a member of President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team, had compared Rep. John Lewis (D-Georgia), a hero of the civil rights movement who has suggested that Trump’s presidency may not be legitimate, to “a spoiled chimp that got too many bananas and rights”:
Collins continued, “Bottom line, for better or worse, John Lewis is a man who’s had a mediocre career in politics thanks to his alleged heroism in the 1960s. Well, let me tell you one thing – there have been a lot of people over the course of this country’s history that have suffered worse things than beatings by police officers. We’ve had people who were tortured, mutilated, shot, slaughtered, decapitated – you name it and someone in this country has probably suffered it. And yet none of them are mentioned today, and none of them have had political careers built on the foundation of their alleged suffering. And that’s exactly my point – John Lewis is a man who’s been granted too many rights by white people out of fear of retribution. He didn’t become a politician because he could contribute something; he was granted that status to shut him up.”
“And now, when things are finally coming out into the open, he’s having a hard time accepting that his entire so-called career is a failure and that he and those like him lost to a superior politician,” he continued. “To make matters worse – they lost to Donald Trump, who’s not even a career politician to begin with. Ultimately, he can be as upset as he wants, but he’s acting like nothing more than a child – no, scratch that – than a chimp that’s lost one of his bananas and is now throwing a tantrum because of it. But, it’s not his fault, let’s clarify that; the problem is that chimps belong in a zoo and not the House of Representatives. At the end of the day, he shouldn’t be upset – I guess Donald Trump is just too good at snatching bananas off of unsuspecting chimps,” Collins concluded.
None of these blatantly racist remarks were actually uttered by Collins, however. The majority of the Politicops article is a “satirical” (i.e., fabricated) spoof of statements Collins did make during a television interview in which he characterized Lewis as a “spoiled child” who was only “pouting” because Trump won the election:
“My opinion is, what John Lewis is doing, he’s pouting,” Collins said during the morning broadcast. “He lost. It’s like a spoiled child and we’ve seen it with the others. They can’t get over the fact that they lost. And what do spoiled little kids do? You know, they run around and throw a tantrum.
“That’s what we’re seeing,” he continued. “They are pouting. And frankly, it’s somewhat enjoyable to watch because it shows you again how upset they are, when they were so smug when they left Congress knowing that Hillary Clinton was going to win.
“We should all actually just kind of grin a little bit and understand that this is how hard this election hit them when Hillary lost,” he added.
Per the standard operating procedure of Newslo and related sites, only the first paragraph of the Politicops article (not quoted above) contains any factual information.