Donald Trump described a doctor who believes that the government are 'lizards' and that 'demon sperm' causes medical ailments as an "important voice".
The president praised Stella Immanuel, a doctor, conspiracy theorist and fire and brimstone Christian pastor, as "very impressive" after she touted hydroxychloroquine as an effective treatment for coronavirus.
Immanuel recently caught public attention after a video of her saying people shouldn't wear masks because there is already a cure for coronavirus was shared online by the president, Donald Trump Jr and, bizarrely, Madonna.
Donald Trump Jr was suspended from Twitter for 12 hours for spreading misinformation, while Madonna's post was flagged as false information by Instagram. Trump himself dodged a Twitter ban as he merely retweeted the video rather than uploading it himself.
Immanuel made her remarks on the steps of the Supreme Court at the 'White Coat Summit', an event backed by the Republican Tea Party movement to undermine mainstream medical advice about coronavirus.
In the video, which has now been removed by Twitter and Facebook, she says:
This virus has a cure. It is called hydroxychloroquine, zinc, and Zithromax.
Hello? You don’t need a mask. There is a cure.
Trump defended his apparent endorsement of her speech at a press conference, saying Immanuel and her associates are "very respected doctors".
I thought she was very impressive in the sense that from where she came. I don't know which country she comes from, but she said that she's had tremendous success with hundreds of different patients, and I thought her voice was an important voice.
Immanuel was born in Cameroon and gained her medical degree at the University of Calabar in Nigeria.
She now lives in Houston, Texas where she set up the Fire Power Ministries, a platform from which she preaches false conspiracy theories.
Her sermons have included claims that alien DNA is used in medicine, that scientists are developing a vaccine to stop people from being religious and that lizard people run the US government.
Immanuel has also claimed that women can be impregnated by 'demon sperm' in their dreams, explaining how this process supposedly works in a 2013 sermon.
They turn into a woman and then they sleep with the man and collect his sperm.
Then they turn into the man and they sleep with a man and deposit the sperm and reproduce more of themselves.
Immanuel is also a big fan of president Trump and has invited him to meet with her.
Trump has not suggested that he endorses all of Immanuel's claims about the medical world, but they certainly share a fondness for peddling hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus treatment.
In case you need a reminder, hydroxychloroquine is a malaria drug that Trump reportedly has a financial interest in promoting.
The fact that it does not cure coronavirus and that his bogus medical advice has been linked to the deaths of American citizens has not stopped Trump from repeatedly promoting it at White House press conferences and claiming to take it himself.
While it's fairly difficult to be shocked by anything Trump says any more, people are reeling from the fact that Trump, whose job it is it dispense medical advice about coronavirus alongside his advisors, would deliberately undermine these efforts by praising a medical conspiracy theorist.
Immanuel is part of a collective called America's Frontline Doctors who oppose wearing masks and the lockdown measures that Trump himself introduced.
Obviously, the phrase 'demon sperm' began trending online.
It's not every day that those words are a legitimate part of mainstream political discourse.
Thankfully, the video in which Immanuel touts hydroxychloroquine has largely been scrubbed from social media.
But Immanuel believes it will soon come back, writing on Twitter: "Hello Facebook put back my profile page and videos up or your computers with start crashing till you do".