Mayra Joli 'the Nodding Woman' Inspired Memes From Both Sides Last Night

While President Donald Trump was the main focus of his televised town hall on NBC Thursday night, an unlikely audience member stole the spotlight in a number of moments: Mayra Joli, who quickly became a point of discussion and a meme after cameras captured her nodding along with the president's talking points.

Known now by memers as the "Nodding Lady,"Joli ran for congress during the 2018 election, campaigning on her support of Trump. "I am not looking to run [for Congress] because I need a paycheck, like Donald Trump. I'm not looking to run because I need fame, like Donald Trump," she told the Miami Herald in 2017. Joli had also shared a video of her speaking to Trump on the red carpet at the Town Hall to her personal Facebook on Thursday night. She is an immigration lawyer.

Some viewers cited Joli's political run as proof she was selected by the Trump campaign and was not an undecided voter. Lincoln Project advisor Tom Nichols, used the classic Homer Simpson slowly backing into a hedge meme to talk about the silence that followed after Joli's identity was uncovered. Nichols also said that Joli was "endorsed by the local Proud Boys." While it's unclear whether or not Joli was endorsed by Proud Boys, he may be referring to a 2018 Miami Herald story that noted Joli had taken a photo with a member of the group that heckled House Speaker Nancy Pelosi at a Florida campaign event.

Me: I would like to know if Nodding Lady was a plant and since she signed up to be at a public televised event, a journo should find her and ask her


Me: Turns out she ran for Congress and was endorsed by the local Proud Boys

MAGA Twitter:

— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) October 16, 2020

Nichols later joked that a response he'd gotten was from a burner account for Joli.

I found Nodding Lady's burner account

— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) October 16, 2020

Some people commented on how noticeable the nodding lady was, stealing the show from Trump, but also sharing their unconfirmed suspicions that she was likely a plant from the Trump campaign. Even Katie Couric called her "distracting."

Trump campaign put a black lady right behind him during this town hall and she is violently nodding her head at EVERYTHING—even shit she DEFINITELY has no insight into—Trump over hear slurring his words saying the IRS has been “out to get him for decades” and she over there like

— dylan r.a. (@elrey) October 16, 2020

I’m channel surfing. The woman to @realDonaldTrump ‘s right keeps nodding her head which I find very distracting. #NBCTrumptownhall

— Katie Couric (@katiecouric) October 16, 2020

That lady behind Trump just keeps nodding incessantly like an idiot sycophant. #ladybehindtrump

— OneAngryMarine (@DwayneLGill) October 16, 2020

Others, like comedian Sarah Cooper, proposed parodying the Liam Neeson hit movie Taken. Earlier in the night, Cooper jokingly asked if she could get hired to do the same thing. Comedian JJ Whitehead showed support for the woman. "Everybody needs a sassy nodding lady in the background, he tweeted. He also called her "the subliminal queen."

A parody of Taken about a black woman who follows Trump around nodding at everything he says. It’s called... Token

— Sarah Cooper (@sarahcpr) October 16, 2020

Wow how much can I get paid to sit behind Trump and nod at everything he says

— Sarah Cooper (@sarahcpr) October 16, 2020

Everybody needs a sassy nodding lady in the background.#TrumpTownHall

— JJWhitehead (@JJWhitesnake) October 16, 2020

Some people did criticize others for revealing the woman's identity on social media, saying that she was "doxxed... for nodding her head."

They doxxed some lady for nodding her head.

This is where we are.

— Mickey White (@BiasedGirl) October 16, 2020

Newsweek reached out to Joli via the email on her law firm's Facebook page, but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Guests at Wunder Garten Beer Garden watch as President Donald Trump speaks during a town hall on October 15, 2020 in Washington, DC. Trump and Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden both participated in simultaneous presidential town halls in Miami and Philadelphia, after the cancellation of the second presidential debate. The woman seated behind Trump in the red mask gained notoriety for nodding along to many things he said. Getty/Tasos Katopodis