Update: Speaking with Wolf Blitzer on CNN, who asked him why he would even make a Hitler comparison — "as you know, 6 million Jews were killed in the Holocaust, many of them with poison gas" — Sean Spicer said the following:
"I was obviously trying to make a point about the heinous acts that Assad had made against his own people last week, using chemical weapons and gas, and frankly I mistakenly used an inappropriate and insensitive reference to the Holocaust, for which, frankly, there is no comparison. For that, I apologize; it was a mistake to do that."
This story was originally published on April 11, 2017, at 3:10 p.m.
Can the White House go one day without a shitstorm of epic proportions? Apparently not. Today, many people on Twitter are justifiably upset about a comment press secretary Sean Spicer made about the Holocaust.
When discussing Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad's human rights violations, Spicer said to reporters, "[Hitler] didn't even sink to...using chemical weapons." Roll the tape, please:
Sean Spicer actually just said "Hitler didn't even sink to level of using chemical weapons"... pic.twitter.com/nUjgUc4hfK— American Bridge (@American_Bridge) April 11, 2017
Holy shit, right? Holy shit. Spicer's clarification — "He was not using the gas on his own people the same way Assad is doing" — didn't go over well.
"He was not using the gas on his own people the same way Assad is doing." -- Sean Spicer on how Hitler didn't sink as low as Assad. Hoo boy.— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) April 11, 2017
His second clarification didn't either. "In no way was I trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the Holocaust, however, I was trying to draw a contrast of the tactic of using airplanes to drop chemical weapons on innocent people." (But must you have made this contrast, which is disturbing and traumatizing to millions of people?)
Here, Twitter fixed it for you:
Why does no one buy his backtracking? Because (do we even have to explain this?), the man actually said Hitler didn't use chemical weapons on his own people.
Two words for Spicer: Gas. Chambers. https://t.co/tiqw6Ze9SR— Sophia Jones (@Sophia_MJones) April 11, 2017
We're not surprised people were angry — and while there will probably be another White House scandal tomorrow, this one is not likely to be forgotten.
chyron operator, Tuesday 9 AM: I've had some bad days in this job but I've never had to write "(Hitler Gassed Millions)" on screen— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) April 11, 2017
2:20 PM: pic.twitter.com/hE4gP5vzlT
In case you didn't get to see it, I have the footage from Sean Spicer's press briefing today. pic.twitter.com/v5JqUgxfK0— Caroline O. (@RVAwonk) April 11, 2017
The Pepsi and United jokes came rolling in...
Pepsi, United, and Sean Spicer in a relay right now and Spicer just got the baton— Caro (@socarolinesays) April 11, 2017
Pepsi: Yo check this out!— Matt Fuller (@MEPFuller) April 11, 2017
United: LOL hold my beer
Spicer: You think darkness is your ally? You merely adopted the dark. I was born in it.
New statement from United: Look, even Hitler didn’t refuse to disembark from an airplane.— Matthew Yglesias (@mattyglesias) April 11, 2017
A lot of people said it's time for Spicer to pack it in — like, yesterday.
If you grabbed any person on Pennsylvania Ave 5 min before a press briefing they'd probably be better than Sean Spicer at Sean Spicer's job pic.twitter.com/nBPHDYFP80— Patrick Monahan (@pattymo) April 11, 2017
The great thing about Sean Spicer's press briefings is I always feel way more confident about my job qualifications after watching them— (((Sadie))) ❄️ (@sadiemichel) April 11, 2017
Not everybody could even muster up a joke, which is also completely understandable.
To all those who lost loved ones during the Holocaust, I assure you we know the truth and we won't let Sean Spicer rewrite history.— Kaivan Shroff (@KaivanShroff) April 11, 2017
Making comparisons to Hitler very rarely goes well and people should just not do that.— Elise Foley (@elisefoley) April 11, 2017
Looks like it's time to reset the White House controversy clock AGAIN.
Reset the "[ ] Days Since the White House had a Holocaust Controversy" calendar back to 0.— Alex Seitz-Wald (@aseitzwald) April 11, 2017
Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?