Sign up for the daily Inside Washington email for exclusive US coverage and analysis sent to your inbox
Get our free Inside Washington email
A Donald Trump adviser has reportedly described his Mar-a-Lago dinner with Kanye West and white supremacist Nick Fuentes as a “f***ing nightmare”.
Mr Trump has attempted to distance himself from Mr Fuentes after the controversial dinner was first reported by Axios, claiming he had no idea who the Holocaust-denying far-right extremist was.
In several posts to Truth Social describing the Tuesday night dinner, Mr Trump said West showed up with three friends “whom I knew nothing about”.
He said the 45-year-old rapper known as Ye, who lost most of his $2bn fortune after he was dropped by by Adidas, Balenciaga and Gap for making antisemitic remarks, had asked for advice about business and a possible run for the presidency in 2024.
Mr Trump’s characterisation of the dinner was undermined by West, who claimed in a campaign-style video posted to Twitter that the former president was “really impressed with Nick Fuentes”.
A longtime Trump adviser, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told NBC News the dinner was a public relations disaster.
“This is a f***ing nightmare,” the adviser reportedly said.
“If people are looking at (Ron) DeSantis to run against Trump, here’s another reason why.”
Kanye West shows a picture of a plane to Donald Trump during a meeting in the Oval office of the White House in 2018
Nick Fuentes is a white supremacist who founded the America First Foundation
(Twitter / RightWingWatch)
A source told NBC News that Mr Fuentes is advising West on his potential presidential bid.
The dinner reportedly became heated after West suggested Mr Trump should be his running mate in 2024.
The Anti-Defamation League and Justice Department has identified Mr Fuentes as a white supremacist and he has been banned from most major social media platforms, including YouTube and Twitter, for inciting violence and breaching hate speech rules.
Mr Fuentes is the founder of the America First Foundation, whose stated aim is to remake the Republican Party into a “truly reactionary party”, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.