The Talking Points Memo (TPM) article published Friday accuses Matt Wolking, a deputy director of communications for Rapid Response for the Trump campaign, of writing anti-Muslim comments on his personal blog in college.
The blog, “Wolking’s World,” featured mostly scraps of news followed by commentary and analysis, commonly found on blogs before the Twitter era.
TPM accuses Wolking of describing Muslims as “murderous thugs,” which stems from a post he wrote arguing that a poll showing that seven percent of Muslims supported the 9/11 attacks was alarming and not defensible.
Commenting on an article on the results of a Gallup poll of Muslims, Wolking criticized the tone and wrote, “They still can’t get around the fact that over 90 million Muslims are murderous thugs, a conservative estimate considering all of those who would rather not go on record as supporting terrorism, especially to a Western polling company.”
Wolking responded to the article on Twitter:
This Talking Points Memo headline is a lie.
In 2008, Gallup published a survey about the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims. Gallup reported that 7% of respondents said the 9/11 attacks were “completely” justified.
If you condone the 9/11 attacks, what other description is there? pic.twitter.com/dt01SlppkG
— Matt Wolking (@MattWolking) May 11, 2019
TPM also accused Wolking of describing Islam as a religion whose followers celebrated 9/11 by dancing in the streets, a fact that was documented by the media at the time.
The Friday night oppo dump prompted ridicule in Republican circles in Washington, and a source close to the campaign revealed to Breitbart News that both the Washington Post and The Daily Beast passed on the story before TPM published it.
Wolking got his start in politics by working as a producer for radio talk show host Laura Ingraham before working for Rep. Tim Griffin, Speaker John Boehner, Rep. Trey Gowdy, Sen. Marco Rubio, and Sen. Bill Cassidy.
The campaign responded to TPM in a statement. “It’s pathetic that the third-rate Democrat opposition research firm American Bridge is now spending time combing through decade-old, college-era WordPress blogs looking for things to distort, and that they finally found someone in the media willing to play along,” Deputy Communications Director Erin Perrine said.