Fact Check

'May They Rot in Hell': Trump Curses Political Enemies in Christmas Day 2023 Post

Readers asked Snopes if it was true that the former U.S. president had ended a Christmas message with the words, "May they rot in hell."

Published Dec 27, 2023

Former U.S. President Donald Trump gestures during a campaign event in Waterloo, Iowa, on Dec. 19, 2023. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images) (KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
Former U.S. President Donald Trump gestures during a campaign event in Waterloo, Iowa, on Dec. 19, 2023. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images)
A Truth Social post by former U.S. President Donald Trump on Dec. 25, 2023, ended with the words, "MAY THEY ROT IN HELL. AGAIN, MERRY CHRISTMAS!"

On Dec. 27, 2023, readers emailed Snopes to ask if it was true that former U.S. President Donald Trump had written a post on Christmas Day that included the words, "May they rot in hell."

A check of Trump's posts on his social media platform, Truth Social, showed dozens of new posts ("Truths") and reposts ("Retruths") in the previous two days.

Buried below all of the more recent shared posts was a "trending" post in which Trump had offered a "Merry Christmas" message on Dec. 25. That post truly did include the words, "May they rot in hell," which appeared in all capital letters. The imprecation was aimed at so-called "thugs" Trump claimed were "looking to destroy our once great USA."

Former US President Donald Trump truly did share a message where he told users Merry Christmas and said of thugs the words may they rot in hell.

The full post (archived) read as follows:

Merry Christmas to all, including Crooked Joe Biden’s ONLY HOPE, Deranged Jack Smith, the out of control Lunatic who just hired outside attorneys, fresh from the SWAMP (unprecedented!), to help him with his poorly executed WITCH HUNT against “TRUMP” and “MAGA.” Included also are World Leaders, both good and bad, but none of which are as evil and “sick” as the THUGS we have inside our Country who, with their Open Borders, INFLATION, Afghanistan Surrender, Green New Scam, High Taxes, No Energy Independence, Woke Military, Russia/Ukraine, Israel/Iran, All Electric Car Lunacy, and so much more, are looking to destroy our once great USA. MAY THEY ROT IN HELL. AGAIN, MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Snopes has previously published a wealth of reporting about claims mentioned in the above post: "open borders," worldwide inflation, the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, the Green New Deal, U.S. President Joe Biden's plans for taxes, Biden's record on energy independence, the idea of the U.S. military being "woke," Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the war in Israel and Gaza and electric-powered vehicles.

Biden Campaign Responds

On the same day that Trump posted his Christmas message on Truth Social, a Biden-Harris campaign spokesperson named Seth Schuster responded by calling it an "erratic Christmas Day rant," according to reporting from Washington Examiner.

We reached out to the Trump campaign by email to ask about the statement and will update this story if we receive a response.

Trump's Christmas Eve Video Message

In addition to the Truth Social post on Christmas Day, Trump also released a video message on Christmas Eve that did not include the words, "May they rot in hell." Rather, the video simply showed Trump offering positive, forward-looking sentiments about Christmas, U.S. military servicemembers and the upcoming 2024 U.S. presidential election.


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Jordan Liles is a Senior Reporter who has been with Snopes since 2016.