“Michael the Black Man,” a fixture at Trump campaign rallies over the last two years, was once a member of a cult who believes many of the President’s enemies are Cherokee Indians.
The outspoken Trump supporter goes by several aliases — Michael Woodside and Michael Symonette — was spotted in his “TRUMP & Republicans ARE NOT RACISTS” and holding his “BLACKS FOR TRUMP” sign at the President’s rally Tuesday night.
“I’m glad I was there to get the message out (about) what’s going on with the Democrats and the Cherokee Indians” who are “absolutely destroying the black man and the white man of America,” Michael told Chicago radio station WLS on Wednesday morning.
Michael — a former cult member who has previously accused Oprah Winfrey of being the devil — said he got in line at about 8 a.m. Tuesday and was the sixth person waiting.
“I put myself there,” he told the station when asked if he was placed behind the President. But his prominence might’ve helped, he added. “They have seen me a lot of times.”
His website, Gods2.com, is featured prominently on his T-shirt and directs to a page of deeper thoughts on the Cherokees.
“The Real K K K Slave Masters Revealed...& they are CHEROKEE Indians (Hidden Babylonians),” his website reads.
Michael alleges the Confederate flag is that of the Cherokee, a Native American tribe driven to the midwest during Andrew Jackson’s administration in the 1800s.
He told WLS on Wednesday that the Cherokee formed the KKK, citing the pointed hats affiliated with Klansmen are “teepees and they were hiding under it.”
The Cherokee Nation condemned Michael's statements as well as the attention he's gotten.
"This person's comments about the Cherokee Nation are complete nonsense and anyone who reads it would agree that it is nonsense," a Cherokee Nation spokeswoman said in a statement to the Daily News. "It's just disappointing that major media outlets are giving someone who clearly appears disturbed a platform to amplify hate speech toward our chief and our people."
"But at a time when issues involving race and identity are so divisive, we also need strong leaders to step forward, be courageous and overpower voices like these."
The GOP rallier has made a name for himself in Miami as a prominent anti-Democratic demonstrator.
He was born Maurice Woodside and joined the Yahweh Ben Yahweh cult somewhere around 1980, according to a 2011 Miami New Times story.
The cult, headed by Hulon Mitchell Jr. and tied to several Miami-area murders in the mid-1980s, recruited not just Woodside, but his brother Ricarod and several other relatives.
He and 15 other members were charged in 1990 with conspiring to murder two people, and his brother testified Michael helped beat a man and stabbed him in the eyer before he was killed by the cult.
Michael and his co-defendants were acquitted, but Mitchell was sentenced to 20 years in prison.
He acknowledged his ties to Yahweh Ben Yahweh on Wednesday, saying Mitchell “was a black man that was destroyed by the Clintons because we were black and prominent and doing things positive, as they have attacked all black organizations.”
At various parts of the WLS interview, he also accused Bill Clinton and Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) of being Cherokees.
After his time with the cult, he changed his name to Michael Symonette, reinvented himself as “Michael the Black Man,” worked as a musician and launched a Miami radio station, according to a 2016 Miami New Times profile.
In the last 20 years Michael was charged with carrying a weapon on an airplane, threatening a police officer and grand theft auto, according to the newspaper.
He made a name for himself in GOP circles. He made headlines in September 2008 when he accused Winfrey of being the devil as well as accusing then-Presidential candidate Barack Obama of “being endorsed by the KKK.”
Michael recorded a video of himself at a Palm Beach County Republican Party’s Lincoln Day Dinner last July, according to the Washington Post, appearing with Gov. Rick Scott.
But he launched into prominence last October, when he appeared at a Lakeland, Fla., Trump rally in the last days of the campaign.
He told the Miami New Times after the Lakeland rally that he liked Trump for wanting to lower taxes.
And why did he despise Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton?
"One reason is because Hillary's last name is Rodham, and their family members are Rothchilds, who enslaved 13,000 slaves as collateral," he told the Miami New Times. "She's also on camera kissing the head of the Ku Klux Klan and saying, 'That's my mentor.' That's all on my website."
At another rally in Sanford, Fla., about two weeks later, Trump turned around and acknowledged the crowd.
“I love the signs behind me. Blacks for Trump. I like those signs,” Trump said. “Blacks for Trump. You watch. You watch. Those signs are great.”
When reached for comment by the Washington Post on Wednesday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders deferred the matter to the Trump campaign, which didn’t immediately comment on Michael’s presence at the rally.