Just hours after the news broke that Kayleigh McEnany would become President Trump’s fourth press secretary, reporters had unearthed tweets from 2012 that showed McEnany expressing support for the widely debunked theory that President Barack Obama was born outside the United States.
The sleuths, however, clearly missed a tweet. It was sent from McEnany the same year, and it’s now generating almost as much snark as her birther commentary from nearly eight years ago.
“FUN FACT:,” McEnany tweeted, “@dominos is wayyyy better than any NYC pizza”
She didn’t use a period to complete her sentence, either because the comment was open-ended or because she’s a millennial with an aversion to punctuation.
Less than an hour later on that November evening in 2012, someone from the official Domino’s Pizza account responded to McEnany’s tweet: “That’s one heck of a compliment! Thanks for the love! #WEAPPRECIATEIT!”
Rick Wilson, a longtime Republican strategist who has become one of Trump’s fiercest critics, is apparently the one who resurfaced the old tweet, adding his own commentary: “You just killed your brand.” He used a period because, presumably, he’s a boomer, but the never-Trumper also ended the tweet with a hashtag #ETTD, a reference to Wilson’s 2018 book, “Everything Trump Touches Dies.”
Wilson’s apparent attempt to tarnish Domino’s with a tweet issued when McEnany was a 24-year-old booker for former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee’s show on Fox News — and not the White House press secretary — drew mixed reaction. In fact, it would be fair to say most were on the side of the pizza delivery giant.
Domino’s has suffered no apparent fallout because of the resurfaced tweet, a company spokeswoman noted in an email to The Washington Post. “None that I am aware of right now,” wrote Jenny Fouracre, director of public relations.
“We continue to be shocked that someone decided to pass off a ‘thank you’ tweet from 2012 as a political statement in 2020. We have responded appropriately,” Fouracre said in an email.
Fouracre means that the Domino’s account responded to Wilson’s original tweet:
It’s just company policy, Fouracre noted, to thank customers when appropriate.
“Since the beginning (not just since the beginning of social media), we have had a consistent protocol: We say thank you when people compliment us,” Fouracre emailed. “If they have a concern, we try to fix it. Most, if not all, retail and consumer brands do this. Being responsive to customers is not political.”
The real transgression here, at least among pizza lovers, is McEnany’s opinion on pies. She seems to think a mass-produced round is superior to New York City-style pizza, a take that can get you run out of any one of the city’s boroughs. In the Big Apple, it’s practically a sport to defend New York pizza against all comers.
A native of Northern Virginia, New York-based chef and restaurateur David Chang had a number of pointed responses to McEnany’s opinion, some of which were unprintable here.
Ed Levine, founder of Serious Eats and the ultimate New York food connoisseur, borrowed a page from McEnany’s boss to frame his response. Levine, I should note, is something of a pizza snob. He wrote “Pizza: A Slice of Heaven: The Ultimate Pizza Guide and Companion” in 2005.
“McEnany’s assertion that Domino’s is wayyyy (does she really need four ‘ys’ to make her point?) better than any New York pizza is a prime example of fake news at its most fake,” Levine wrote in an email to The Post. “In fact, it’s not just fake news. It’s downright delusional. If The Washington Post could give more four Pinocchios to any given lie, now is the time. Even ten would not be enough.”
Levine seems to be arguing for the bottomless Pinocchio for this statement.
For her part, McEnany is not backing down, not completely at least. In response to a request for comment from The Post, her office pointed to a tweet she had pinned to her personal account. It reads: “I LOVE @dominos (and also @pizzahut)!”
But, you’ll note, she is no longer drawing any comparisons to New York pizza.
Correction: A previous version of this article mistakenly said Kayleigh McEnany was a producer for former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee’s show on Fox News in November 2012. In fact, she was a booker. This version has been corrected.
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