The animated clip was based off an Oct. 22, 2018 cover story on Trump in TIME. It featured the song "In the Hall of the Mountain King by Edvard Grieg, according to PEOPLE, and showed Trump's future campaign signs. The signs started at the year 2024 and ran all the way through 2048.
Each sign is slowly zoomed in on as the video plays. As it reaches 2048, a GIF of the president can be seen above the sign. The years on the sign below the GIF begin to flash by in four-year intervals, reaching all the way to 90,000.
Trump included "EEEEEE," a reference to eternity, in a final note about the clip. The video ends with one last statement about the president's plans to stay in office beyond the eight-year maximum. "TRUMP 4EVA," the last sign reads.
In response to the tweet, TIME tweeted its original version of the interactive cover.
The animation you shared is a manipulated version of the Oct. 22, 2018, cover of TIME. Here's the real one pic.twitter.com/P0WF2nSeNH— TIME (@TIME) June 21, 2019
"It's clearly a joke, and to the people who were saying that he would never leave office, I don't think you can interpret it any other way," CarpeDonktum, who did not provide his real name, said. "That's how ridiculous the statement is. Is he really going to be president until the year 10,000?"
Twitter was flooded with shocked, and some frightened, reactions to the president's tweet.
This, ladies and gentlemen, is fascism. https://t.co/M8xl4OYssi— Talib Kweli Greene (@TalibKweli) June 21, 2019
He’s not joking.June 22, 2019
If the scaredy-cats in the House don’t impeach this lawbreaking president, Trump Forever is exactly where we could end up.
He gets accused of rape so he posts a video implying that he can be president forever, because that’s what normal not completely insane presidents do. I mean, I’m sure Lincoln would have tweeted the same thing, amiright? https://t.co/rvDR5Ucllv— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) June 21, 2019
And now Trump is tweeting about being POTUS forever, while his ICE goons are about to terrorize immigrant families across the country. This "long game" by the Dem leadership is really working, isn't it?— Peter Daou (@peterdaou) June 21, 2019
So this is what staring into the vortex of hell looks like https://t.co/T7QgT7sN2l— Tyler Conway (@jtylerconway) June 21, 2019
I'm not one to get riled up over Trump tweets, but this one is pretty damn scary. This man doesn't believe in a democratic form of government, and now he's putting feelers out there.
He has to be defeated. https://t.co/nPyXQqxdOY— Emma Vigeland (@EmmaVigeland) June 21, 2019
While the meme creator claims the president's tweet was in jest, he's joked about staying in office longer than allowed on more than one occasion. CNN noted that on June 16, Trump wondered in a tweet if his supporters "would demand I stay longer?" adding, "KEEP AMERICA GREAT."
In March 2018, he gave a closed-door speech at Mar-a-Lago during which he talked about China's president, Xi Jinping. He noted that Jinping will be president in China for as long as he lives, floating the idea for America.
"He's not president for life. President for life. No, he's great. And look, he was able to do that. I think it's great. Maybe we'll have to give that a shot some day," Trump said.
The following month, during a rally with Republican members of Congress, Trump suggested America should try 16-year terms for presidents.
"We're cutting record numbers of regulations — we've cut more regulations in a year and a quarter than any administration whether it's four years, eight years, or in one case 16 years," he said. "Should we go back to 16 years? Should we do that? Congressman, can we do that?"
In response to backlash he received over the comments, Trump said: "You know the last time I jokingly said that the papers started saying, 'He's got despotic tendencies.' No I'm not looking to do it. Unless you want to do it, that's OK."0comments
The 73-year-old began his re-election campaign in Orlando, Florida with a huge event. The rally was held on Tuesday, and featured an appearance from Melania Trump, who introduced her husband. The same day, The Orlando Sentinel, a local paper, announced that it planned to endorse anyone but Trump for the presidency in 2020. The paper has a history of endorsing Republican candidates.
"Enough of the chaos, the division, the schoolyard insults, the self-aggrandizement, the corruption, and especially the lies," the newspaper's editorial board wrote.