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GOP lawmakers turn Will Smith’s slap into anti-Biden memes

Associated Press/Chris Pizzello

Some Republican lawmakers are turning the viral Oscars photo of Will Smith slapping Chris Rock into memes knocking President Biden for rising inflation and gas prices in the U.S.

Smith made headlines Sunday evening when he walked onstage at the Academy Awards ceremony and slapped Chris Rock after the comedian made a joke about the “King Richard” actor’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

Videos and photos of the altercation have since circulated widely on social media.

Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) turned the viral photo political Sunday evening, posting a meme on Twitter that illustrated “Biden’s gas prices” slapping “American wallets.”

Rep. Brian Mast (R-Fla.) posted a similar meme, taking aim at President Biden’s energy policy and rising gas prices. The words “Biden’s policy on energy” were placed on Smith in a photo of him slapping Rock, who aligned with the words “Americans at the gas pump.”

“Biden’s energy policy is a slap in the face for working Americans,” Mast wrote in the tweet.

Rep. Bryan Steil (R-Wis.) also knocked rising inflation in a meme of the viral Smith-Rock photo, though his version did not reference Biden directly.

The phrase “I would like to buy a…” placed on Rock appears to be getting slapped by “inflation,” which is placed on Smith.

Rock, while presenting an award at the Oscars, said “Jada, I love ya. ‘G.I. Jane 2,’ can’t wait to see it,” referring to Jada Pinkett Smith, who sports a bald head like the character in the 1997 film “G.I. Jane.” In 2018, Smith said she had been diagnosed with alopecia areata, a disease that causes hair loss.

After Rock delivered the joke, Will Smith walked on stage and slapped the comedian.

“Will Smith just smacked the s— out of me,” Rock said.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said it denounces violence, writing in a statement that the organization “does not condone violence of any form.”

“Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world,” the Academy added.

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) on Sunday said Rock, without mentioning him directly, declined to file a police report.

“LAPD investigative entities are aware of an incident between two individuals during the Academy Awards program. The incident involved one individual slapping another,” the LAPD wrote in a statement.

“The individual involved has declined to file a police report,” the department said, adding that “If the involved party desires a police report at a later date, LAPD will be available to complete an investigative report.”

Smith went on to win the best actor award for his role in “King Richard.”

The Hill reached out to the White House for comment.

Tags Andy Biggs Brian Mast bryan steil Joe Biden

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