For as long as he’s commanded the E Street Band, Bruce Springsteen has gone by “the Boss.” But now, thanks to President Donald Trump, New Jersey’s favorite rocker may have a new nickname.
Reminiscing about his 2016 election victory at a campaign rally in Minneapolis on Thursday, Trump took aim at music royalty, telling the crowd, “I didn’t need Beyoncé and Jay-Z. I didn’t need little Bruce Springsteen."
The president continued to target Springsteen, adding that before the 2016 election, the “Born in the U.S.A.” singer would “do about two songs [at a Hillary Clinton event], then leave … and everyone leaves with him. And [Clinton is] still speaking in front of the same lousy crowd. Craziest thing I’ve ever seen.”
And while it’s unclear what the president meant by “little," it’s abundantly clear that Twitter was not having any of it.
“This might be what turns the internet against him,” wrote one sports columnist.
“At 70, ‘little’ Bruce Springsteen could kick Trump’s butt. Last year he did a four-hour show in Philly heat with the energy of a college kid,” wrote another Twitter user.
“I think you mean Bruce Springsteen and the heart-stopping, hard-rocking, earth-quaking, justifying, death-defying, legendary E Street Band,” Democratic presidential candidate Cory Booker posted.
Springsteen, a fervent supporter of several high-profile Democrats, has openly criticized the president, calling Trump a “moron” in a Rolling Stone interview in 2016, and “deeply damaged” in a 2018 Esquire profile.
In January 2017, Springsteen played a secret farewell acoustic concert at the White House for President Barack Obama and his staffers, and played a three-song set in front of Philadelphia’s Independence Hall in support of Clinton in 2016.
In 2018, he broke from the script of his self-titled Broadway show to condemn the Trump administration’s “inhumane” detainment and separation of more than 2,000 children at the Mexican border.
The newly-anointed “Little Bruce" joins a lengthy list of other celebrities and politicians mocked and nicknamed by the president, including “Cryin’ Chuck” Schumer, “Sleepy Joe” Biden, “Crooked Hillary” Clinton, and John Legend’s “filthy-mouthed wife,” Chrissy Teigen.