Trump Airs Fresh Conspiracy Theory About Campus Protests

Donald Trump has floated the baseless theory that pro-Palestine protests spreading across university campuses are deliberately providing cover for an ongoing influx of migrants.

Alongside re-posting a series of memes, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee wrote on his Truth Social platform: “Do you think that the Radical Left Lunatics that are causing all of the CHAOS at our Colleges and Universities are doing so in order to take the FOCUS away from our Southern Border, where millions of people, many from prisons and mental institutions, are pouring into our Country? Just askin’…???”

While Fox News and other conservative outlets have often peddled the idea that protesters are “paid agitators,” Trump’s version — that pro-Palestine demonstrators are specifically covering for migration policy — hasn’t yet gained much traction on right-wing media.

A wave of student protests washing over the country began when police first tried to end an encampment at Columbia University in New York nearly two weeks ago.Broadly speaking, activists are calling for a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war, and some are questioning university investments in companies that do business in Israel.

Meanwhile, illegal immigration is seen as a growing crisis for the Biden administration — and an issue where Trump can score political points — as authorities both at the border and in cities nationwide have struggled to handle recent surges.

Trump's post on Truth Social.
Trump's post on Truth Social. Truth Social

Trump has also used the protests to downplay the Jan. 6 insurrection. Speaking on Tuesday, Trump said he feared pro-Palestine demonstrators could be treated more leniently than the rioters who stormed the U.S. Capitol.

With court of session Wednesday, Trump is scheduled to make his first campaign stops since his hush money trial began, and is set to visit Waukesha, Wisconsin, and then head to Freeland, Michigan. Both states flipped from Trump to President Joe Biden in 2020, and remain on a knife-edge ahead of November’s vote.