Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is calling on Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum to denounce rapper T.I. for his latest music video which a news release issued by the Republican Party of Florida says depicts “a demeaning and disgusting portrayal of a woman in the Oval Office” of the White House.”
T.I., whose real name is Clifford Harris, congratulated Gillum after he won the Democratic nomination for governor and has been supportive of Gillum on social media.
“The newly released video from rapper T.I. is offensive, objectifying and degrading to women everywhere and is a disgusting display of social media bullying,” said Bondi. “In Florida, where we continue to fight horrific crimes against women, including human trafficking, sexist displays like this one only serve to endorse the objectification of women and can embolden and encourage offenders.
T.I., whose real name is Clifford Harris, stars in the video as himself. He is seen sitting at a desk in a scene made to look as if it were in the Oval Office. The video switches to footage of President Donald Trump taking off from the White House in Marine One.
The video shifts back to the “Oval Office” where a woman who resembles First Lady Melania Trump enters the room. She is wearing only a jacket, which reads: “I really don’t care do u?” That’s the same type of jacket the first lady wore during a June trip to Texas in which she visited a location where children of illegal immigrants were being held after being separated from their parents. The woman then proceeds to strip off the jacket and dance atop the desk.
“T.I. is on the record as being an early and enthusiastic supporter of Andrew Gillum’s campaign for Governor, and I hope that the Gillum campaign will not stand silently by and allow the women in our state to believe this video is acceptable,” Bondi added. “The Gillum campaign should not only denounce T.I.’s highly offensive and degrading video but also T.I.’s support for his campaign.”
There’s been no word from the Gillum campaign.
The First Lady’s office denounced the video soon after it was released, saying it is “disrespectful and disgusting to portray her this way simply because of politics. These kinds of vulgar attacks only further the divisiveness and bias in our country — it needs to stop.”