Addison Rae appeared to introduce herself to Donald Trump at a UFC fight

Addison Rae wears a black ensemble while attending the MTV Movie & TV Awards.
Addison Rae appeared to be a UFC correspondent after she shared photos of her at UFC 264. Matt Winkelmeyer/2021 MTV Movie and TV Awards/Getty Images
  • Addison Rae appeared to say hello to former President Donald Trump during a UFC event.
  • The TikTok star previously denied rumors she was a Republican.
  • Other social media influencers have faced criticism for appearing to support Trump.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

A clip that appears to show influencer Addison Rae approaching former President Donald Trump at a UFC event has led to renewed speculation over her political affiliation and whether she supported Trump in the 2020 election.

In a video uploaded to the NELK YouTube channel on Wednesday titled “Addison Rae Says Hi to Donald Trump,” the TikTok star can be seen leaving her seat after spotting Trump in the front row and tapping him on the shoulder.

“I’m Addison. Nice to meet you. I have to say hi, hello. So nice to meet you,” she told a person who appears to be Trump at Conor McGregor and Dustin Poirier’s UFC 264 match on Saturday.

The video, which has already amassed over 2.2 million views on YouTube, is causing a stir online, with several Twitter users accusing Rae of “fangirling” over the former president.

Clips of the interaction spread on Twitter, with one upload from drama channel DefNoodles amassing at least 615,000 views. From there, the video generated discourse online, with DefNoodles’ tweet including the clip being quote retweeted over 3,200 times.

The DefNoodles Twitter account was suspended for violating Twitter’s rules on Tuesday. A Twitter representative did not immediately respond to an inquiry regarding the account’s suspension.

Footage of the purported Rae-Trump interaction is still available in the NELK video, as well as other Twitter re-uploads.

“You actually *don’t* have to say hi,” actress and influencer Meghan Rienks said in a tweet. Comedian and influencer Chris Klemens added: “Oopsies Addison… your Republican is showing.”

Rumors that Rae was a Republican and supporter of Donald Trump began in September 2020, when a TikTok alleging to show Rae’s voter registration went viral.

The video, posted by TikToker @tommy.memetastic, appeared to show the voting records and registration of Addison Easterling, which is Rae’s real name. The records, which the TikToker said he found through the “Vote Joe” app, suggested that Rae voted for Republican candidates in 2014, 2016, and 2018, in Tarzana, California.

Rae debunked the video in its comment section at the time. “This isn’t real,” Rae said. “First, I’m from Louisiana. Second, I’m not even registered to vote and never have been. I’m actually doing it for the first time with someone important and I’m excited to do so. This is fake.”

Other influencers have faced criticism in the past for being conservative or supporting Trump. In November 2020, former “Dance Moms” star Kalani Hilliker received backlash for expressing support for President Trump in the 2020 election via Instagram story posts and tweets, Insider reported.

In May 2020, Dixie D’Amelio claimed that she had received death threats as a result of “inaccurate speculation of [her] political belief” after people online began to hypothesize she was a Republican. The TikTok star clarified in a tweet that she had never supported President Trump and was an “independent voter.”

At the same UFC 264 event, Rae also attracted controversy for posting a photo of herself at the preliminary event, where she appeared to joke that she was a correspondent for the fight. After backlash on Twitter, ESPN confirmed to Insider that though the TikTok star conducted some interviews, she was not hired as a full-time employee.

Rae did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Kat Tenbarge contributed reporting.

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