https://thehill.com/homenews/news/521355-mr-rogers-trends-after-trump-adviser-compares-biden-to-icon

Mr. Rogers started trending on Twitter on Thursday after senior Trump campaign adviser Mercedes Schlapp tweeted that watching ABC’s town hall with Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenFeds investigating if alleged Hunter Biden emails connected to foreign intelligence operation: report Six takeaways from Trump and Biden’s dueling town halls Biden draws sharp contrast with Trump in low-key town hall MORE was similar to watching an episode of the famous children’s television show “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.”

“Well @JoeBiden @ABCPolitics townhall feels like I am watching an episode of Mister Rodgers Neighborhood,” Schlapp tweeted, misspelling the late TV icon Fred Rogers‘s last name. 

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Schlapp was one of several on Twitter who claimed ABC George StephanopoulosGeorge Robert StephanopoulosSix takeaways from Trump and Biden’s dueling town halls Biden draws sharp contrast with Trump in low-key town hall Biden leaves door open to adding Supreme Court justices MORE asked Biden easier questions than NBC moderator Savannah Guthrie did of President TrumpDonald John TrumpFeds investigating if alleged Hunter Biden emails connected to foreign intelligence operation: report Six takeaways from Trump and Biden’s dueling town halls Biden draws sharp contrast with Trump in low-key town hall MORE, who appeared in a town hall that ran at the same time as Biden’s event.

Many Twitter users, however, fired back at Schlapp, saying it was not really an insult to compare Biden to the longtime children’s show host, who promoted messages of kindness and patience to young audiences throughout the show’s run from 1968 to 2001.

Democratic strategist and former Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump fields questions on coronavirus, conspiracy theories in combative town hall Poll: Graham leads Harrison by 6 points in SC Senate race Romney says he’ll vote to put Barrett on Supreme Court MORE senior adviser Zac Petkanas tweeted, “Pretty telling that this crew thinks Mr. Rogers is the bad guy.” 

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April Reign, who created the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite, tweeted that Schlapp’s remark was “the worst self-own I’ve seen this political season, especially since the universally beloved Mr. Rogers was from Pennsylvania, where Biden was tonight.” 

The comments come after Biden made a video call to Joanne Rogers, the widow of children’s TV icon Fred Rogers, late last month while in her husband’s hometown of Latrobe, Pa., after she described herself as a “very big Biden fan” during an interview with the Daily Beast

“I think he’s kind,” Rogers said in the interview. “I think we all need somebody like Biden who can give us little pats on the back.” 

During the same interview, Rogers called Trump “a horrible person.” 

“This man is pathologically ill. Mentally ill,” she said the same week that Trump held a rally in Latrobe. 

She rebuked Trump for telling lies when asked why she considers him “horrible.”

“I think maybe the fact that Mr. Trump seldom tells the truth,” she said. “If he does, it’s just a fluke, I think. But the fact [is] that I can’t believe anything he says, not even the simplest thing.”

Rogers said that her husband remained silent on his political leanings while he was alive and hosting the children’s show. 

“Fred tried to stay pretty quiet about politics, basically because his program was for children,” adding that she can speak her own opinion now that she’s “alone.”

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