Donald Trump has treated his supporters to yet another recital of a sinister poem comparing immigrants to treacherous snakes.
On the campaign trail, the US president repeatedly read the lyrics of Al Wilson’s 1968 song ‘The Snake’ and since the election has continued to recite it at rallies.
It tells the story of an ill snake that gets taken in by a kindly woman, only for it to bite her once it has recovered.
And during his speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland on Friday, Mr Trump told the crowd “you may love it and you may say isn’t that terrible,” before adding: “If you say isn’t that terrible who cares”.
He introduced it by saying: “This is called The Snake and think of it in terms of immigration.”
Reading from a piece of paper he had brought with him rather than the teleprompter, he then said: “On her way to work one morning, down the path along the lake, a tender hearted woman saw a poor, half hearted, snake.
“His pretty coloured skin had been all frosted with the dew. ‘Poor thing,’ she cried, ‘I’ll take you in, and I’ll take care of you.’
“‘Take me in, oh tender woman. Take me in, for heaven’s sake. Take me in, oh tender woman,’ sighed the vicious snake.
“She wrapped him up all cosy in a comforter of silk, and laid him by her fire side with some honey and some milk.
“She hurried home from work that night and as soon as she arrived, she found that pretty snake she’d taken in had been revived.
“‘Take me in, oh tender woman. Take me in for heaven’s sake. Take me in, oh tender woman,’ sighed that vicious snake.
“She clutched him to her bosom, ‘you’re so beautiful’, she cried.
“‘But if I hadn’t brought you in by now, oh, heavens, you would have died.’
“She stroked his pretty skin again and kissed and held him tight. But instead of saying thank you, that snake gave her a vicious bite!
“‘Take me in, oh tender woman, take me in for heaven’s sake. Take me in, oh tender woman,’ sighed the vicious snake.
“‘I have saved you,’ cried the woman. ‘And you’ve bitten me, heaven’s why? You know your bite is poisonous, and now I’m going to die.’
“‘Oh, shut up, silly woman,’ said the reptile with a grin. ‘You knew damn well I was a snake before you took me in”.