J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, apologized Monday for incorrectly suggesting on Twitter that President Donald Trump had snubbed a disabled child during a press conference on healthcare in late July.
Rowling’s apology came hours after PolitiFact rated her original tweets — which have all since been deleted — as “Pants on Fire,” concluding that her comments were founded on an edited clip from which Trump’s greeting to 3-year-old Monty Weer was cut. Weer is confined to a wheelchair because of a spinal birth defect.
“Multiple sources have informed me that that was not a full or accurate representation of their interaction,” Rowling tweeted.
“I very clearly projected my own sensitivities around the issue of disabled people being overlooked or ignored onto the images I saw and if that caused any distress to that boy or his family, I apologise unreservedly,” she continued.
The writer, a regular Twitter critic of Trump and his policies, first reacted last Friday to the edited video from a July 24 press conference, according to PolitiFact, during which Trump delivered a speech on health care.
“Trump imitated a disabled reporter. Now he pretends not to see a child in a wheelchair, as though frightened he might catch his condition,” Rowling originally tweeted based on the spliced footage. (While she has since deleted them, an archived of the tweets still exists.)
White House video of the same press conference, however, showed Trump appearing to bow down and greet Weer as he entered the venue, PolitiFact said.
Marjorie Kelly Weer, Monty’s mother, also appeared to have called out Rowling’s wrong interpretation of events on Facebook, the BBC reports.
“If someone can please get a message to J.K. Rowling: Trump didn’t snub my son & Monty wasn’t even trying to shake his hand,” she wrote, adding that Monty wasn’t into hand shaking anyway.
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