Turning Point USA aide fired for projecting fake presidential seal with Russian symbol behind Trump

President Trump.
(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The Turning Point USA aide responsible for a parody presidential seal featuring a Russia symbol and golf clubs being projected behind President Trump has already been fired.

After reports emerged that Trump appeared at the conservative group's event on Tuesday and stood in front of a parody presidential seal meant to look like the Russian coat of arms and with golf clubs added, Turning Point USA told CNN on Thursday an aide has been fired.

A source with the group also told CNN, though, that they think it was not intentional but that the person simply did a Google search for the real presidential seal and "with the pressure of the event, didn't notice that it is a doctored seal." The source also apologized and said "we're sorry for the mix-up and meant no disrespect to the White House or the president or the advance team."

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The group also confirmed to The Washington Post, which previously reported on the fake seal appearing behind Trump, that the aide has been fired. "I don't think it was malicious intent, but nevertheless," the spokesperson said.

The White House had previously directed questions about the incident to Turning Point USA, and a White House official told CNN "we never saw the seal in question before it appeared in the video." Still, a former White House ethics lawyer, Richard Painter, argued to the Post that Trump's team still shares some blame, as "to let someone project something on the screen that isn't controlled by the White House is pretty stupid."

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Brendan Morrow

Brendan is a staff writer at The Week. A graduate of Hofstra University with a degree in journalism, he also writes about horror films for Bloody Disgusting and has previously contributed to The Cheat Sheet, Heavy, WhatCulture, and more. He lives in New York City surrounded by Star Wars posters.