Talk-radio giant Rush Limbaugh is suggesting Seddique Mateen’s appearance at a Hillary Clinton rally might not be an accident.
Instead, he said, the appearance of the father of the Orlando, Florida, nightclub-massacre shooter might be a “trap” for Donald Trump.
“I just want to reiterate to you that I’m not sure I buy this that it was a screw up,” Limbaugh said Tuesday. “I think that this could be – could have been – an attempt at putting Khizr Khan Jr. up there. This could have been a potential trap to lure Trump into making what they think is another impolitic, inappropriate comment so that they could… I mean, that’s how these people operate, and I wouldn’t put that past the Clinton campaign or anybody running it for a moment.”
Social media exploded Tuesday when it was revealed the father of Omar Mateen, the terrorist who slaughtered Americans at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, was standing behind the Democratic nominee as she held a campaign rally in Florida.
Mateen spoke to local media after the event, holding a sign promoting Hillary Clinton for president. According to the sign, Clinton is “good for national security” and will promote “gun control laws.”
Mateen also told the media his family is cooperating with the federal government and spoke about his love for America.
However, Seddique Mateen also has a long extremist history. He served as director and vice president of the Islamic Center of Fort Pierce, Florida, where his son worshiped.
According to counter-terrorism analyst and former Department of Homeland Security staffer Philip Haney, the mosque is affiliated with the Sharia Board of America, which is in turn linked to an association called the Rahmat-e-Alam Foundation.
This group was affiliated with Darul Uloom Chicago, which is in turn linked to the Islamic Institute of Education. This was at the center of the counter-terrorism case Haney worked as a counter-terrorism officer when he was investigating the terrorist group Tablighi Jamaat. He recounted his experiences in the book “See Something, Say Nothing.”
Seddique Matteen also had his own show on Youtube where he posted strange rants against the United States and opined on American politics. This included an announcement of his candidacy for the presidency of Afghanistan, a profession of allegiance to the Taliban and tributes to his “warrior brothers.”
However, as Limbaugh noted, he condemned his son’s actions, publicly at least. And that may be enough for the national media.
“The media is gonna turn this guy into a hero,” said Limbaugh. He suggested the media might use the elder Mateen’s profession of support for Hillary as a way to further disassociate terrorism from Islam in the public’s mind.
“That’s what this guy’s support for Hillary does,” he noted. “It enables everybody to say, ‘Ah see? This guy [Orlando terrorist Omar Mateen], he was a one-off lunatic. He was so deranged – he was seriously, sadly unbalanced – it had nothing to do with Islam. Why, he blew up the gay bar in Orlando because… After all, look! His father is a brilliant man. He supports Hillary Clinton and understands how great she will be for the world and so forth and so on.”
Limbaugh also asked if the media were going to ask Hillary Clinton to denounce Mateen in the same way they have repeatedly badgered Trump to denounce unwanted supporters like former Louisiana state representative David Duke. He also laughed about how it fell to local media to discover Mateen was at the rally.
“They found the guy, they found the guy carrying his sign, they found the guy holding up his sign,” Limbaugh observed. “They’re interviewing him, and he’s all-in for Hillary. Now, if this were reversed, and if this were Trump, I guarantee you the media would be all over Trump today demanding to know how in the hell the guy even got in.”
Limbaugh then imitated the media’s reaction.
“‘What does it mean? When are you gonna denounce this man? Doesn’t this destroy your campaign, that the father of the anti-gay bomber at the Pulse nightclub loves you? Doesn’t that…? Well, how can…?'”
“Of course no similar occurrence with Hillary is taking place,” Limbaugh noted sarcastically. “The Drive-Bys [in the media] are acting shocked that they missed it. Right.”
As of this report, the Hillary Clinton campaign had not yet “disavowed” Mateen. Jake Tapper noted on CNN the Clinton campaign has not issued a statement, despite his request.