Over the weekend, Special Counsel Robert Mueller and his team handed down 12 indictments for Russian operatives who allegedly helped hack the 2016 U.S. election. Initially, President Trump refused to accept these findings. On Monday, he stood on stage beside Putin in Helsinki, Finland, accepting the Russian president's denial of those charges.
Kutcher was among the many Americans who watched all of this unfold with horror. Seemingly in reference to the totality of all these developments, he posted an impassioned tweet calling on Americans to re-examine their priorities.
Every American needs to do a gut check right now, today. Who are you? Who are we? What do we stand for? What do we stand against? Who represents us?— ashton kutcher (@aplusk) July 17, 2018
"Every American needs to do a gut check right now, today," he wrote. "Who are you? Who are we? What do we stand for? What do we stand against? Who represents us?"
Kutcher's remarks echoed those of many others, especially celebrities with wide-reaching influence. Even many Republican lawmakers condemned the president's performance outright, and some were even reportedly considering impeachment.
However, Kutcher's followers were not all on that side necessarily. The replies to his tweet filled with debate that went well past heated and became boiling hot.
"Hey Ashton I like you as an actor and a human being I think you do great Things but you're not in the same world as the rest of us," came one response. "You and your wife are very well off you don't see things the way to 95% of Americans see things. Trump knows exactly what he's doing."
Hey Ashton I like you as an actor and a human being I think you do great Things but you’re not in the same world as the rest of us you and your wife are very well off you don’t see things the way to 95% of Americans see things. Trump knows exactly what he’s doing 5 letters relax— ripple enthuist (@jon15480220) July 17, 2018
"5 letters," the same user added. "relax."
These days, much of Kutcher's fanbase comes from his Netflix original series The Ranch. While not particularly political, the show has a conservative bent to it, which meant that some of his followers were surprised to hear him condemn the president.
"President Trump represents ALL OF US, whether the left likes it or not he was duly elected to be OUR President," someone wrote. "He is doing a great job getting us out of the 8 year Obama MESS."
President Trump represents ALL OF US, whether the left likes it or not he was duly elected to be OUR President. He is doing a great job getting us out of the 8 year Obama MESS.— Jeremy Woods (@UKFAN2121) July 17, 2018
Still, ountless others seemed to agree that Monday's performance went over the line — including President Trump himself. On Tuesday, he held another press conference where he walked back his defense of Putin — claiming that he had accidentally said the opposite of what he meant.
"In a key sentence in my remarks I said the word 'would' instead of 'wouldn't,'" he said, according to a report by CNN. "The sentence should have been: 'I don't see any reason why it wouldn't be Russia.' Sort of a double negative."
As I said today and many times before, “I have GREAT confidence in MY intelligence people.” However, I also recognize that in order to build a brighter future, we cannot exclusively focus on the past – as the world’s two largest nuclear powers, we must get along! #HELSINKI2018— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 16, 2018