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Disney World is Having Trouble With Robot Trump at Its ‘Hall of Presidents’ Show

In today’s segment of not-so-shocking news, a Tuesday report from Vice’s Motherboard suggests Disney World has been having some trouble with President Donald Trump, as it prepares his presidential robot for its “Hall of Presidents” show.

For anyone not educated about this very important White House/Disney World tradition running since the Clinton administration, Disney World hosts a show featuring life-sized Audio-Animatronic (Disney parlance for robot) caricatures of every past U.S. president. Each robot can move, talk, and in some cases, sit and stand. Ever since President Bill Clinton, sitting U.S. presidents send audio recordings of themselves lavishing nonpartisan praises on the glory of America.

Typically, these speeches involve collaboration between the president and Disney World, which, predictably enough, led to some problems. After all, President Trump danced at the January inaugural ball to Frank Sinatra’s “My Way,” and his communication team made it very clear he intended to write and record the speech his way.

From Motherboard:

Disney assumed that the transition from Obamabot to Trumpbot would be smooth and seamless. “We’ve already prepared a bust of President-elect Trump to go into our Hall of the Presidents at Disney World,” said Disney CEO Bob Iger in a call with Wall Street analysts last November. But instead, according to a source close to Magic Kingdom management, the Trump communications team has been combative and obstinate, upsetting an established process that three prior presidential administrations found amenable.

“When Disney tried to get this process started earlier this year,” said the source in an email to Motherboard, “Trump’s people said, ‘We’ll be writing the speech that the President’s Audio-Animatronic figure will be saying.'”

Honestly, anyone including Disney World’s toddler guests, could have seen this would be a problem, but nonetheless, Disney World got itself into this mess and was determined to get itself out.

One potential solution, Motherboard notes, “was to have the current president not talk, and revert the attraction to something resembling its original format, where only Lincoln spoke during the final roll call.”

This was, after all, the original format of the attraction from when it opened in 1971 through the end of 1993, when the talking Clinton-bot was introduced.

That likely won’t be the case. A source told Motherboard that “Disney officials are bending over backwards in an effort not to be seen as disrespectful towards President Trump,” out of fear the president will tweet about the conflict and call on conservatives to boycott Disney World (“the company’s biggest fear”).

Instead, the company is holding off on updating the ride for the time being, likely until fall this year.

“There are those at Imagineering [the researchers and developers behind Disney’s theme park attractions] who hope that if they hold off on doing anything with this attraction until the fall, Trump may have done something so egregious that the general public won’t have an issue with putting a non-talking version of [Trump] in The Hall of Presidents,” the source told Motherboard.

This isn’t altogether too unlikely, so best of luck to Disney World.

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