President Donald Trump celebrated violence against journalists during a campaign rally in Pennsylvania on Tuesday night, mocking a reporter who was injured covering this summer’s racial injustice demonstrations and calling the act “actually a beautiful sight.”
The president’s comments are the latest of many attacks on the free press but an overt endorsement of members of the media coming under attack. During one moment at the rally, Trump recounted racial justice demonstrations in Minneapolis following the police killing of George Floyd, saying the city had been “cured” after National Guard troops were deployed.
“They’d grab one guy — I’m a reporter. I’m a reporter,’” Trump said, imitating the scene. “They threw him aside like he was a little bag of popcorn. Honestly, when you watch the crap that we’ve all had to take so long, when you see that — you don’t want to do that — but when you see it, it’s actually a beautiful sight.”
“It’s a beautiful sight,” he repeated.
When Trump was describing another incident, in which MSNBC anchor Ali Velshi was struck in the knee with a rubber bullet, the president mockingly said the journalist was an “idiot reporter” who yelled, “I’ve been hit.”
Velshi responded to the comments later Tuesday, wondering on Twitter why a journalist getting shot on the job was a “beautiful thing to Trump?” The president made a similar remark about Velshi’s injury at another rally this weekend.
The president went on to spread falsehoods about the largely peaceful demonstrations across the nation that are calling for an end to police brutality and systemic racism following the deaths of Floyd and other Black Americans at the hands of law enforcement.
“They go out and buy tuna fish and soup,” Trump claimed, adding: “Because they throw it. It’s the perfect weight. Tuna fish, they can really rip it and it hits you. … You can throw that sucker, you can put a curve on it.”
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more informationTrack ballot status
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place