On Thursday morning, the Today show aired a light piece about Donald Trump’s prized Mar-a-Lago property in Palm Beach, Florida. “It’s a storied estate, steeped in history,” declared NBC News’ Kristen Welker, before throwing to audio of Anthony Senecal, Trump’s longtime (and now retired) butler. Perhaps ironically, the Today show piece about Mar-a-Lago’s history did not once mention Senecal’s own history, which includes being investigated for the Secret Service over threats to President Obama’s life he made on Facebook.
Senecal’s troubling habit of representing himself in a disturbing manner on social media is no secret. In May of this year, Mother Jones’ David Corn found several appallingly racist and sexist posts on Senecal’s Facebook page. More than one offered the suggestion that President Obama be hanged. The Secret Service confirmed that month that it was investigating Senecal as a result of his social media activity.
“Mr. Trump has spent the last 20 Thanksgivings here. But now, as president-elect, everything is different,” declared Welker in Thursday morning’s Today show piece. For example, post-Nov. 8, security at the Mar-a-Lago estate is much tighter, and a major network just aired a light segment starring a man who as recently as last year called Hillary Clinton a “LYING DECEIVING C**T !!!!!!!,” a “bitch,” and a “slut.” Everything is different.
During the segment, Senecal, who has also suggested on Facebook that Ferguson, Missouri, should be carpet-bombed, showed off photos of himself and the Trump family at the estate. “Tony Senecal knows a thing or two about Mar-a-Lago,” declared Welker, either ignorant or apathetic about the fact that Senecal posted a photo of the Confederate flag less than two weeks after the Charleston church shooting and frequently railed against “negroes.” He once signed a petition requesting Jay Z and Beyonce be arrested for supporting terrorism.
“It’s just Mr. Trump and Miss Melania and myself—excuse me, president-elect Trump,” said Senecal to close his portion of the Today show piece. “Gotta get used to that.”
NBC did not immediately respond to a request from The Daily Beast for comment.