Trump supporter Jenna Ellis called out Simone Biles and Megan Rapinoe in a tweet calling them “fellow losers” with Joe Biden as they received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Biles and Rapinoe were among 17 people to receive the honour on Thursday, July 7, making the gymnast the youngest person to receive the award.
Biles and Rapinoe receive medal of freedom
The White House notice stated: “Simone Biles is the most decorated American gymnast in history, with a combined total of 32 Olympic and World Championship medals.
“Biles is also a prominent advocate for athletes’ mental health and safety, children in the foster care system, and victims of sexual assault.”
When announcing the award, President Biden called the 25-year-old a “trailblazer and role model”. He added: “When she stands on the podium, we see what she is: absolute courage to turn personal pain into a greater purpose, to stand up and speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.
“Today, she adds to her medal count of 32 – I don’t know if you’re going to find room.”
On Rapinoe – who is an Olympic gold medallist, two-time Women’s World Cup winner and captain of OL Reign in the National Women’s Soccer League – Biden said she was: “A champion for an essential American truth that everyone – everyone – is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect.”
Throughout her career, the 37-year-old has been an advocate for gender pay equality, racial justice and LGBTQ+ rights.
Jenna Ellis calls out Biles and Rapinoe
Although many were pleased to see the accomplished athletes honoured, one Trump fan wasn’t in the mood to pay compliments. Jenna Ellis, legal advisor for the Trump Campaign and current senior advisor for Pennsylvania hopeful Doug Mastriano, called out the Olympians in a tweet as being “fellow losers” with Biden.
However, her harsh words have been met by criticism, including a clap-back from former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti:
Others have also jumped to the defence of the athletes, talking about their career accomplishments and actions as activists and advocates.
This isn’t the first time Ellis has made controversial remarks. In 2016 she called the designation of New York gay bar the Stonewall Inn as a national monument a “celebration of sin”.
In 2017, she called on conservatives to put aside personal feelings towards members of the LGBTQ+ community. She wrote in a Facebook post: “The basis of believing homosexuality is sin shouldn’t be emotional or feelings based, given to changing when you can ‘understand’ someone or if you love them or if you hate them… Sin is always sin, even if nice people commit it.”