Al Sharpton fears that Donald Trump’s message to the Proud Boys and his other supporters will incite violence at the polls this November.
In an interview with TMZ Live, the Reverend said that he is “very concerned” for the people who plan to vote in-person this year after Trump’s comments. “When you have the president of the United States end a debate — the first debate of his re-election — stand up in front of tens of millions of people, and first, refuse to denounce white supremacy, refuse to denounce a hate group. He says, ‘Who are you talking bout?’ when it is identified by a Fox News anchorman — now this is not a liberal — saying, ‘Proud Boys stand back, stand by.’”
“And then in the same debate, when he’s asked would he tell his supporters to not go to the streets and do anything if the election was not decided the night of the election day,” Sharpton continued. “You can't look at that any way, shape or form other than he is refusing to tell people don't go to the street and he’s telling a known supremacist militia group be on standby. There’s no reason to try and mince words here cause he didn't.”
During Tuesday night’s (Sep. 29) presidential debate, Trump refused to denounce white supremacy and he also told the Proud Boys — a far-right group with a history of violent confrontations — to be on standby if he loses the election.
“Proud Boys: stand back and stand by,” said the president, when asked to condemn white supremacy. “But, I’ll tell you what, somebody’s gotta do something about Antifa and the left because this is not a right-wing problem; this is a left-wing problem.”
Sharpton says the things Trump says have never been said by any other president in history. “We’ve had some very bad presidents, but I don't know any president — even in pre-Lincoln times where slavery was the law — that will stand up and embrace that I will not tell people don't rebel against an election and I will openly embrace people that have said that they represent some kind of violence and it’s based on race,” he said. “That has not happened in the history of the country.”