Protesters Escorted Out of Trump Rally in Tampa

President Donald Trump‘s rally in Tampa tonight was briefly disrupted by two protesters.

Rallygoers booed and cameras picked up the protesters being escorted out of the venue.

The President briefly riffed and said, “One person. And tomorrow the headlines will be MASSIVE PROTEST.”

[Mediaite]

Trump: Statue of Liberty protester was a ‘clown’

President Trump on Thursday went after the female demonstrator who scaled the base of the Statue of Liberty to protest his administration’s immigration policies, calling her a “clown.”

“You saw that clown yesterday on the Statue of Liberty, you saw those clowns that went up there,” Trump said at a campaign rally in Montana on Thursday. “I wouldn’t have done it.”

“I would have said let’s get some nets ,we’ll wait ’til she….just get some nets,” he said.

A woman was taken into custody on Wednesday, the Fourth of July, after she scaled the base of the Statue of Liberty during a protest at the statue over Trump’s immigration policies.

Police went after the woman and brought her down in a harness.

Protesters had unveiled a banner reading “Abolish I.C.E.” at the demonstration earlier Wednesday.

Democratic lawmakers have adopted calls to abolish Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after backlash over Trump’s since-ended policy to separate immigrant families at the border.

“We want tough, strong, powerful borders and we want no crime. And want to protect ICE,” Trump said at the rally Thursday. “They protect us and we protect them.”

[The Hill]

Media

Trump mocks protester at rally: ‘Was that a man or a woman?’

At least two protesters interrupted President Trump’s rally in Minnesota on Wednesday, with the president mocking one individual’s appearance.

The activists held up signs and disrupted the event minutes apart as the president railed against illegal immigration. Trump brushed aside each individual, telling them to “go home” and “say hello to Mommy.”

“Was that a man or a woman? Because he needs a haircut more than I do,” Trump said as the second protester was escorted out.

“I couldn’t tell,” Trump continued. “Needs a haircut.”

The crowd roared, and broke into a “USA” chant.

The president then transitioned back into criticisms of Democrats and the media, blaming each for the country’s immigration problems.

Wednesday night’s rally came hours after Trump signed an executive order to detain families apprehended at the border together. The decision came as a stark reversal after the president and his administration spent days claiming they could not address the practice of separating families.

The rally took place in Duluth, Minn., where he rallied support for Peter Stauber, a county commissioner and a retired police officer, who is running to represent the congressional district that contains Duluth.

After bringing Stauber on stage for brief remarks, the president launched into his usual list of talking points. He touted the economy, blamed Democrats for having weak positions on immigration and touted the results of his summit last week with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

[The Hill]

Trump Cites “Anti-Police Agitators,” in Boston, Then Thanks Crowds For Protesting “Hate”

President Trump decried “anti-police agitators” in Boston Saturday, after thousands of demonstrators with anti-Nazi and anti-racism signs and chants drowned out a small group of white nationalists holding a “free speech” rally.

The president, taking to Twitter to praise police as “looking tough and smart,” thanked them and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh for their handling of the event.

Police did appear to scuffle with a large crowd of counter-protesters Saturday, but the president’s response to the event that drew tens of thousands of largely peaceful counter-protesters is sure to spark criticism. Mr. Trump is already under fire for saying there were “very fine people” among the white nationalist protesters in last week’s deadly events in Charlottesville, Virginia, and for claiming “many sides” were to blame for the violence.

The president also said protest is sometimes necessary to “heal” the nation.

But Mr. Trump’s Twitter account later thanked people for protesting “bigotry and hate.”

The group that organized the “free speech” rally had until recently intended to have speakers with ties to white nationalism. Boston police did experience some confrontation against them, the Boston Police Department’s Twitter account seems to indicate. The police commissioner said 27 people were arrested throughout the day.

[CBS News]

Trump – Once Again – Fails to Condemn White Supremacists

President Donald Trump, a man known for his bluntness, was anything but on Saturday, failing to name the white supremacists or alt-right groups at the center of violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Instead, the man whose vicious attacks against Hillary Clinton, John McCain, federal judges, fellow Republican leaders and journalists helped define him both in and out of the White House simply blamed “many sides.”

Trump stepped to the podium at his New Jersey golf resort and read a statement on the clashes, pinning the “egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides. “It has been going on for a long time in our country — not Donald Trump, not Barack Obama,” he said. “It has been going on for a long, long time. It has no place in America.”

Fellow Republicans slammed Trump’s lack of directness and attempt to inject moral equivalence into the situation of chaos and terror.

“We should call evil by its name,” tweeted Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch, the most senior Republican in the Senate. “My brother didn’t give his life fighting Hitler for Nazi ideas to go unchallenged here at home.”

“Very important for the nation to hear @POTUS describe events in #Charlottesville for what they are, a terror attack by #whitesupremacists,” tweeted Sen. Marco Rubio, a competitor for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination.

“Mr. President – we must call evil by its name. These were white supremacists and this was domestic terrorism,” tweeted Sen. Cory Gardner, a Colorado Republican.

Scott Jennings, a former special assistant to President George W. Bush, said Trump’s speech was not his “best effort,” and faulted the President for “failure to acknowledge the racism, failure to acknowledge the white supremacy, failure to acknowledge the people who are marching around with Nazi flags on American soil.”

In his decades of public life, Trump has never been one to hold back his thoughts, and that has continued in the White House, where in his seven months as President it has become clear that he views conflicts as primarily black-and-white.

Trump’s Twitter account has become synonymous for blunt burns, regularly using someone’s name when he feels they slighted him or let him down. Trump, in just the last week, has used his Twitter account to call out Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell by name, charge Democratic Sen. Richard Blumenthal with crying “like a baby” and needle media outlets by name.

His campaign was defined by his direct attacks. He pointedly attacked Khizr Khan, the father of a Muslim U.S. soldier killed in Iraq in 2004, for his speech at the Democratic National Committee that challenged his understanding of the Constitution, suggested federal Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel was unable to be impartial because of his Mexican heritage and said in a CNN interview that Fox News’ Megyn Kelly had “blood coming out of her wherever” after she questioned him at a debate.

Even before Trump was a presidential candidate, he was driven by a guiding principle imparted on him by Roy Cohn, his lawyer-turned-mentor: “If they screw you, screw them back 10 times as hard.”

“What happens is they hit me and I hit them back harder,” he told Fox News in 2016. “That’s what we want to lead the country.”

Criticized others for not quickly calling attacks ‘terrorism’

On Saturday at his Bedminster resort, Trump’s bluntness gave way to vagueness as he failed to mention the impetus behind the violence that left at least one person dead in the streets of Charlottesville.

In doing so, Trump left it to anonymous White House officials to explain his remarks, leaving the door open to questions about his sincerity and why he won’t talk about the racists at the heart of the protests.

“The President was condemning hatred, bigotry and violence from all sources and all sides,” a White House official said. “There was violence between protesters and counter protesters today.”

By being equivocal, Trump also failed to follow the same self-proclaimed rules he used to hammer other politicians.

Trump constantly slammed Obama and Clinton during his run for the presidency for failing to label terrorist attacks as such. He called out the two Democrats for failing to use the term “radical Islamic terrorism.”

“These are radical Islamic terrorists and she won’t even mention the word, and nor will President Obama,” Trump said during an October 9 presidential debate. “Now, to solve a problem, you have to be able to state what the problem is or at least say the name.”
Trump declined to do just that on Saturday, as video of white nationalists flooded TV screens across the country hours after a smaller group marched through Charlottesville at night holding tiki torches and chanted, “You will not replace us.”

Instead, Trump called for “a swift restoration of law and order” and said the federal government was “ready, willing and able” to provide “whatever other assistance is needed.” He saluted law enforcement for their response and said he spoke with Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, about the attack.

But the businessman-turned-president also touted his own economic achievements during his brief speech, mentioning employment numbers and recent companies that decided to relocate to the United States.

“We have so many incredible things happening in our country, so when I watch Charlottesville, to me it is very, very sad,” he said.

White nationalists tie themselves to Trump

The reality for Trump is that his presidency helped white nationalists gain national attention, with groups drafting off his insurgent candidacy by tying themselves to the President and everything he stood for.

After the election, in a November 2016 interview with The New York Times, Trump disavowed the movement and said he did not intend to energize the alt-right.

“I don’t want to energize the group, and I disavow the group,” Trump told a group of Times reporters and columnists during a meeting at the newspaper’s headquarters in New York.

He added: “It’s not a group I want to energize, and if they are energized, I want to look into it and find out why.”

But men like David Duke, possibly the most famous white nationalist, directly tied Saturday’s protests to Trump.

“We are determined to take this country back. We’re gonna fulfill the promises of Donald Trump,” Duke said in an interview with The Indianapolis Star on Saturday in Charlottesville. “That’s why we voted for Donald Trump because he said he’s going to take our country back.”

When Trump tweeted earlier on Saturday that everyone “must be united & condemn all that hate stands for,” Duke grew angry, feeling that the man who help bring white nationalist to this point was slamming them. He urged Trump — via Twitter — to “take a good look in the mirror & remember it was White Americans who put you in the presidency, not radical leftists.”

Though earlier in the day Trump billed Saturday’s event as a press conference, the President declined to respond to shouted question that would have allowed him to directly take on white nationalists.

“Mr. President, do you want the support of these white nationalist groups who say they support you, Mr. President? Have you denounced them strongly enough,” one reporter shouted.

“A car plowing into people, would you call that terrorism sir?” another asked.
Trump walked out of the room.

[CNN]

Trump is Being Sued for Saying ‘Get ’Em Out of Here’ at a Rally. He Just Did it Again.

“Get them out of here.”

Those five words have already led to a lawsuit against President Donald Trump. But Trump continued to use them Saturday night at a rally celebrating his first 100 days in office.

According to CNN, Kashiya Nwanguma, Molly Shah and Henry Brousseau attended a Trump rally in Louisville, Kentucky in March 2016 to protest. When they did so, however, Trump took notice and said from the podium, “Get them out of here.”

The protesters then say they were pushed out of the venue as Trump supporters yelled at them, per the Washington Post. In a suit filed this year, the three are accusing several supporters of assault and battery and Trump himself of incitement to riot, negligence, gross negligence and recklessness. They say Trump should have known that his words would have sparked violence.

That case is still making its way through the legal system, but on April 1, a federal judge in Kentucky ruled that it was plausible that Trump’s words has incited violence and ruled that the lawsuit could proceed, a defeat for Trump’s legal team, per the Louisville Courier-Journal.

On Saturday, however, Trump was hosting another rally in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, when another protest seemed to break out. Trump stopped his speech to say, “That’s right, get him out of here. Get him out.” The crowd then began to chant, “USA!” as Trump watched. Trump resumed by saying “Thank you” and then praising law enforcement.

Another social media post showed multiple law enforcement officials restraining a protester on the ground. A key argument of Trump’s legal team in the current lawsuit is that his comments were clearly directed at law enforcement officials, not supporters, but Hale rejected that claim.

Two of the original protesters who are being sued for the events of the Louisville rally have since filed claims saying they took Trump’s words as a directive towards them to remove the protesters. Because of this, the two supporters say, Trump should be held liable for their actions, not them, according to the Associated Press.

(h/t McClatchy)

Trump Calls for Investigation Into Tax Day Protesters

President Donald Trump on Twitter Sunday lashed out against citizens who’d taken to the streets to exercise their First Amendment rights.

While claiming that thousands of people who on Saturday demanded Trump finally release his full tax returns were “paid” protesters, Trump tweeted, “The election is over!”

“Someone should look into who paid for the small organized rallies,” Trump tweeted a day after thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in more than 150 cities across the country.

An hour after wishing his 28 million followers a Happy Easter, Trump hailed his November win and called out those making his undisclosed tax history an issue.

“I did what was an almost an impossible thing to do for a Republican-easily won the Electoral College! Now Tax Returns are brought up again?” Trump said on Twitter.

The president then followed up by repeating an unsubstantiated claim he’s made before that some of the protesters against him were “paid,” an allegation that became popular in some right-wing circles in the build up to the 2016 presidential election.

Trump himself used paid actors to pose as rally attendees during his campaign.

The Tax Day protesters called for Trump to release his tax returns — something nearly all major presidential candidates have done since the 1970s — and call on lawmakers to represent their interests over those of major corporations.

Trump and his administration have repeatedly dismissed calls for him to release his taxes, first claiming he couldn’t because he was being audited, then saying the issue was more of interest to journalists and liberal politicians.

But a poll from the Pew Research Center in January found that more than two-thirds of all Americans believe the president has an obligation to release his tax returns.

This is not the first time the president has tweeted such accusations in the wake of major demonstrations against him and his policies. On Nov. 10, Trump tweeted that protests against his victory were “unfair” and said “professional protesters, incited by the media” were turning out in the streets.

And on Feb. 3, in the midst of major protests against Trump’s first executive order on immigration, the president tweeted that “Professional anarchists, thugs and paid protesters are proving the point of millions of people who voted to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!”

(h/t NBC News)

Trump Threatens Funding Cut If UC Berkeley ‘Does Not Allow Free Speech’

President Trump early Thursday threatened to cut federal funding to the University of California, Berkley after violent protests broke out on its campus Wednesday in response to a planned appearance by a far-right commentator.

“If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view — NO FEDERAL FUNDS?” the president tweeted Thursday morning.

A scheduled appearance by right-wing commentator Milo Yiannopoulos was canceled Wednesday night about two hours before the Breitbart editor was scheduled to speak.

The university said in a statement the violence was “instigated by a group of about 150 masked agitators who came onto campus and interrupted an otherwise non-violent protest,” according to NPR.

“This was a group of agitators who were masked up, throwing rocks, commercial grade fireworks and Molotov cocktails at officers,” U.C. Berkeley Police Chief Margo Bennet told The Associated Press.

More than 1,500 people had showed up to protest Yiannopoulos’s appearance on campus.

At least six people were injured, according to CNN.

Yiannopoulos called what happened “an expression of political violence,” according to CNN.

“I’m just stunned that hundreds of people … were so threatened by the idea that a conservative speaker might be persuasive, interesting, funny and might take some people with him, they have to shut it down at all costs,” he said in a Facebook Live video.

(h/t The Hill)

Trump to Supporters Harassing Minorities: ‘Stop It’

Donald Trump on Sunday told his supporters to stop harassing minorities, in his first televised sit-down interview since becoming President-elect.

“I am so saddened to hear that,” Trump told CBS’ Lesley Stahl on “60 Minutes” when she said Latinos and Muslims are facing harassment. “And I say, ‘Stop it.’ If it — if it helps, I will say this, and I will say right to the cameras: ‘Stop it.'”

Trump directed his comments to his own supporters whom Stahl said have written racist slogans or chanted degrading messages — particularly in schools. It was a powerful appeal to a nation ripped apart by the divisive 2016 campaign. Trump’s election has left Democrats angry and many minorities fearful about the future.

Yet Trump also criticized the protests that have broken out in cities across the United States since his defeat of Hillary Clinton on Tuesday.

Trump said he’s seen “a very small amount” — including “one or two instances” — of racial slurs being directed at minorities, particularly in largely white schools, since his election.
“I would say don’t do it, that’s terrible, because I’m going to bring this country together,” Trump said.

Richard Cohen, President of the Southern Poverty Law Canter told CNN’s “New Day” on Monday that there have been more that 300 incidents that their organization has recorded.

“He needs to take a little bit more responsibility for what’s happening,” Cohen said.

As for anti-Trump protests, Trump said, “I think it’s horrible if that’s happening. I think it’s built up by the press because, frankly, they’ll take every single little incident that they can find in this country, which could’ve been there before. If I weren’t even around doing this, and they’ll make into an event because that’s the way the press is.”

Media

Trump Claims Obama Scolded Protester, Video Shows Otherwise

Donald Trump, during a campaign rally in Hershey, Pennsylvania, on Friday night, gave a startlingly different account of how President Barack Obama handled a protester earlier in the day.

Obama was in Fayetteville, North Carolina, rallying voters for Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton. At one point, a protester held up a Trump sign from among the crowd, and the crowd lost it, yelling and booing at the man.

The incident generated headlines not because of what the protester did, but because of how Obama reined in the crowd:

“First of all, we live in a country that respects free speech, second of all it looks like he may have served in our military, and we’ve got to respect that. Third of all, he was elderly, and we’ve got to respect our elders.”

Here’s how Trump framed the incident to his own audience hours later:

“He was talking to the protester, screaming at him, really screaming at him. By the way, if I spoke the way Obama spoke to that protester, they would say, ‘He became unhinged!’ … And he spent so much time screaming at this protester and frankly, it was a disgrace.”

During Obama’s event in North Carolina, he struggled to refocus the crowd, but ultimately implored them with a familiar call to action: “Don’t boo, vote.”

The Clinton campaign has deployed the president to Ohio, North Carolina, Florida, and Pennsylvania — key battleground states for the Democratic presidential nominee — hoping Obama’s high popularity would boost voter turnout.

(h/t Business Insider)

Media

Obama calming supporters

Trump’s false account

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