Fact Check

Did President Trump Fire White House Butler Cecil Gaines?

A report that President Trump had fired White House butler Cecil Gaines for disobedience was satirical in origin.

Published Feb. 9, 2017

 (Joe Seer / Shutterstock, Inc.)
Image courtesy of Joe Seer / Shutterstock, Inc.
President Trump fired longtime White House butler Cecil Gaines for disobedience.

On 5 February 2017, the web site Extra Newsfeed published an article reporting that President Trump had fired Cecil Gaines, a butler who had served presidents at the White House since the 1950s:

President Fires White House Butler, Holdover From Eisenhower Era

Trump says Cecil Gaines betrayed him by putting tofu in a lunch taco

Cecil Gaines, who has been serving presidents in the White House since the late 1950’s, was fired by Donald Trump yesterday for disobedience.

“I was shocked, to be honest,” said the 78-year-old Gaines, who was most recently employed as a day butler for the First Family. “I thought me and the president, we were on good terms, but he turned out to be a real bastard from hell, pardon me for saying so.”

There was no truth to the above-quoted story, which was tagged as "humor" and "satire."

The man pictured in the accompanying image is actor Forrest Whitaker, who played the fictional character "Cecil Gaines" in the 2013 movie The Butler, loosely based on the real life of White House butler Eugene Allen. President Trump did not fire actor Forrest Whitaker, the fictional character Cecil Gaines, former butler Eugene Allen (who retired in 1986 and passed away in 2010), or any real-life White House butler.


Haygood, Will.   "Eugene Allen, White House Butler for 8 Presidents, Dies at 90."     The Washington Post.   2 April 2010.

Dan Evon is a former writer for Snopes.

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