Black Panther Founder Did Not Endorse Trump, Grandson Says

The grandson of a founding member of the Black Panther Party said his grandfather does not support former President Donald Trump, asserting that a viral video interview of the activist supposedly endorsing Trump was misleading.

On Tuesday, Eric Jones responded to the viral video that was posted on Sunday, sharing on X that he was working to get it removed because it misrepresented his grandfather, David Hilliard, the former chief of staff of the Black Panther Party. The original video was posted on TikTok by a woman named Carol Mitchell, who asked Hilliard how he knew Trump and his thoughts on the presidential candidate. The video was picked up by right-wing social media accounts and some news outlets, which reported that Hilliard expressed support for Trump. But Jones said in his own video alongside his grandfather that Mitchell was “misrepresenting” his grandfather’s views on the former president and threatened to obtain a cease and desist order against her.

“My grandpa, David Hilliard does not even know Trump is a politician,” Jones said in a post on X. “He has been dealing with cognitive issues since 2014. He can only recall the past.”

Mitchell posted the original video Sunday. The video has since been taken down from her TikTok account, but in a reposted version of the video, Mitchell can be seen asking Hilliard about Trump.

“I want you to meet someone who knew Donald Trump and he’s going to tell you about Donald Trump in his own words,” Mitchell said in the video, before passing the phone to Hilliard.

“I knew Trump when Trump was a college student in New York and he supported the Black Panther Party,” Hilliard said in the video.

After being asked, Hilliard said in the video that Trump was “a decent man” and “a friend of African Americans.” He went on to say that Trump is “not a racist.”

“In your opinion sir, your valued opinion, why do you think they put all these charges on Trump and they’re afraid of him to be president?” Mitchell asked Hilliard in the video.

“Because Trump likes Africans in America. He likes Black folks,” Hilliard replied. “I think that Trump is qualified in a very decent approach to having somebody representing America.”

Read More: Donald Trump Convicted in Historic New York Hush-Money Trial

Mitchell went on to say that she agreed with Hilliard and thought “Trump would be able to get us off this government thing” and “get us to making our own money.”

After the video went viral, Jones condemned Mitchell for making and posting the video.

“My Grandfather doesn’t support Donald Trump,” he said on X. “This is just senior abuse. This lady really is awful for doing this.”

He posted a video in which he appeared with his grandfather, clarifying that Hilliard had only been speaking about Trump in the context of knowing him in the past.

“That is purely speaking in terms of the past—that is not a nod of support to any of today’s political climate and with Donald Trump or with any other candidate,” Jones said in the video.

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