In Kenosha on Tuesday, President Donald Trump deflected, when a reporter asked whether he believe’s there is systemic racism in America.
“We should talk about the kind of violence that we’ve seen in Portland, and here other places. It’s tremendous violence . . . We’ve seen tremendous violence, and we will put it out very, very quickly if given the chance, and that’s what this is all about.”
The exchange came during a round table featuring the president, members of his administration, Republican elected officials and local law enforcement.
Q: Do you believe systemic racism is a problem in this country?
TRUMP: “We should talk about the kind of violence we’ve seen in Portland and here and other places… you have anarchists, and you have the looters, and you have the rioters… that’s what you should be focused on.” pic.twitter.com/vZEaXflAub
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) September 1, 2020
“By and large this is not peaceful protest. When you walk into an area and you see buildings that are burned down, and fortunately here we stopped it early, and so the damage is relatively minimal. But when you look at some of these areas that they just don’t ask for the help, they refuse to allow us to go in and help them. And by the time you get there the place is disintegrated, and then they say it was a peaceful protest. It’s not a peaceful protest, and you shouldn’t call it a peaceful protest.”
“You may have protesters, but you have some really bad people too. You have anarchists, and you have the looters, you have the rioters . . . you have agitators. And that’s what you should be focusing on with your question. Really I think it’s hurt the media very badly.”
Trump toured damage and met with business owners and law enforcement in Kenosha.
He did not meet with the family of Jacob Blake, the Black man whose shooting by a Kenosha police officer touched off a week of peaceful protests along with destructive riots.