With "kung flu," Trump sparks backlash over racist language

The episode laid bare how, despite attempts from White House aides to justify Trump’s rhetoric as a way to pin the blame for the coronavirus pandemic on China, where it originated, the president appears more interested in juicing his conservative base.

“The fact that he got the crowd so riled up was just chilling,” said Chris Lu, a Chinese American who served as cabinet secretary in the Obama White House. “In that really primal desire to get a rise out of the crowd and get that affirmation he wants, he went to this place that has such bad consequences for Asian Americans broadly and for Asian American kids in particular. It’s a joke to him but not to us.”…

His use of “kung flu” coincides with polling that shows low public support for his handling of both the coronavirus, which is spiking in many states, as well as his response to the nationwide protests for racial justice, in which he has denounced protesters and called for a militarized police response.