Of all the things that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said this election season, many in the region seemed taken aback when he declared Monday night during a rally in Manchester, N.H., that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady had cast a vote for him.
Just hours after Trump boasted about the support of both Brady and coach Bill Belichick to a crowd of thousands of supporters at the SNHU Arena, Brady’s Facebook timeline became flooded with a range of responses about Trump’s claims.
“Lost all respect for Tom Brady today,” one person wrote beneath a Facebook status posted on Brady’s official page on Oct. 31. “Have always [rooted] for him as a player being that his father is Irish like myself and that he is a great player. But now I obviously see that he must have lived a sheltered life. Disappointed.”
The angry and dispirited responses continued into Tuesday morning.
“Well, now we know your moral compass and values,” one person said. “So much for the Patriots. You sure know how to drag ‘em down. Got nothing to cheer about here.”
Others said that they felt conflicted — they view Brady as a hero and a champion, but expressed concern about standing behind and rooting for someone who Trump said supported him.
“Is it because he is so politically correct about women, or his experience in dealing with world leaders,” someone said. “Your choice makes it impossible for me to cheer for you, guess you don’t care but it hurts me a lot.”
Brady appeared at the town clerk’s office in Brookline on Monday morning, where he filled out an absentee ballot — a vote that Trump said to a raucous crowd at the New Hampshire rally was for him.
Brady’s vote came just hours after he appeared on WEEI-FM, where he told the hosts of the Kirk & Callahan show that he planned to take part in the election. Brady stopped short of saying who he would support, however. The quarterback has stayed mum throughout the election about his candidate of choice.
Similar to Brady’s Facebook page, insults and messages from doleful fans started to appear on Gisele Bündchen’s Instagram account.
In response to a commenter last Friday, who had asked if Brady and Bündchen would be supporting Trump, the supermodel and mother responded with an emphatic, “NO!”
But following Trump’s announcement, people turned Bündchen’s Instagram page into a political battleground.
“Did your husband seriously vote for Trump!? if so you can kiss nature goodbye,” one person wrote beneath a picture of Bündchen and her kids riding horses on a beach. “He supported a candidate who doesn’t believe in climate change!”
Another person piled on the more than 1,000 messages — many of them about Trump’s remarks — with a statement of disbelief.
“Cannot believe your husband endorses Trump,” the person said. “I’m embarrassed for you.”
While the negative comments seemed to outweigh the positive on both Brady’s Facebook page and Bündchen’s Instagram account, others came out in support of the couple, and went as far as defending their choice to vote for whomever they please.
“It’s none of no one’s business who they vote for, and all these comments are disgusting,” someone said. “This is exactly how the rest of the world sees us, a bunch of judgemental ... idiots.”
Someone else added that the anger being lobbed at Brady’s family was misguided.
“Why attack someone on their political views? This is why we are so divided as a nation,” the person wrote. “If it’s not the Democratic way, it’s no way? Sad.”