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Rubio Campaign Press Release - MUST WATCH: Marco Rubio Has the Perfect Response to the Trump Phenomenon Getting So Scary

March 12, 2016

Marco Reacts to Violence at Trump Rallies: This Is Ripping Our Country Apart


Marco held a press conference Saturday to address the events of Friday night, when a Trump rally had to be canceled due to protests.

Some of his key points:

Trump is hardly blameless.

I think we also have to look at the rhetoric coming from the Republican front-runner. This is a man who in rallies has told his supporters to basically beat up the people who are in the crowd and he'll pay their legal fees, [this is] someone who's encouraged people in the audience to rough up anyone who stands up and says something he doesn't like.

I think the media bears some responsibility: For too long, those comments were ignored. Some people thought they were cute, and he's gotten an extraordinary amount of coverage for all the stuff he says that's outrageous. Every time Donald Trump offends someone, says something ridiculous, says something offensive, it's wall-to-wall coverage, and it's only elevated him even more.

Something's wrong with a culture where it's okay to just say and do whatever you want.

This is what a culture and society looks like when everybody says whatever the heck they want, when everybody says I'm going to speak my mind, if I'm angry it gives me the right to say or do anything I want. Well, there are other people who are angry, too. If they speak out and say whatever they want, the result is it all breaks down. It's called chaos. It's called anarchy...

You wonder whether we're headed ... where we're no longer able or capable of having a differences of opinion but in fact now protests become a license to [commit] violence, to take on your opponents physically.

Forget about the election for a moment. There's a broader issue in our country and this is what happens when a leading presidential candidate goes around feeding into a narrative of anger and bitterness and frustration. I think we all need to take a step back and ask ourselves, Are we contributing to this? Because if this continues, this country will continue to be ripped apart at the seams and we will be incapable of solving any of the major issues that we have.

Leaders don't stoke anger, they try to solve it:

There's real frustration in America. There are people in this country angry because they are working really hard and their jobs are gone. There are people in this country that are angry because they feel disenfranchised from the American Dream.

But the job of a leader is to address the causes of that anger and try to solve it, not try to stoke that anger so they vote for you. This is in many ways not just [about] Chicago — put that aside for a moment. The broader anger that now exists in the American political discourse is a direct result of the fact that words have consequences, that when you run for President of the United States or if you are President of the United States, which everyone [in this race] is endeavoring to be, you can't just take on the attitude that I'm going to say whatever I want.

You can't say whatever you want. It has real life consequences for people in this country, and all over the world. And we're starting to see it bear out.

When is Donald Trump going to start condemning his supporters' violence?

A Donald Trump supporter sucker punched a man the other day at an event. Donald Trump has yet to condemn him. After the man was released from jail, he said next time, I'll kill him. [Trump] still has not condemned it.

So it tells you that in many ways he doesn't want to say anything to his supporters because he doesn't want to turn them off, because he understands that the reason why they are voting for him is because he has tapped into this anger.

The problem is leadership has never been ability taking people's anger and using it to get them to vote for you. If it is, it's a dangerous style of leadership. Leadership is about acknowledging people's anger but, as a leader, trying to address why it is they're angry instead of manipulating their anger so that they become your voter, your donor, and supporter.

So . . . when is [Trump] going to start condemning this stuff? Instead all he's saying is, "These are really bad dudes at my events," almost as if justifying that since he, from 400 yards away or 400 feet away, concludes that these people look dangerous to him. He understands that the crowd likes to rough them up.

Trump's behavior is a sad reflection on America:

I'm upset because of what it's doing to our country: We are being ripped apart at the seams — the divisions are becoming along class and in some instances, it appears, race and other elements

It's disturbing, but also, I'm sad. I'm sad for this country. This is supposed to be the example to a world how a republic functions, and instead people are watching Third World images last night coming out of Chicago.

This is a pattern with Trump rallies:

If this was just one time that it happened, you would say, this is about Chicago and about a bunch of thugs that showed up and disrupted an event.

This is not just about Chicago: It happened in St. Louis. It happened earlier this week. Allegedly his campaign manager has roughed up a reporter at an event.

This has happened repeatedly now. This is not new; this is a pattern, of the idea that we are angry and since we a angry we can say and do whatever we want. we are tired of being constrained by civility, tired of being constrained by rules of cultural engagement. . . . I get it, people are frustrated by the direction of our country. But leaders cannot say whatever they want, because words have consequences.

The media needs to examine the role it's played:

I hope the U.S. media begins to examine the role they've played in all this, because I can tell you that for months I've been giving speeches on public policy and nobody paid a lot of attention.

The minute that I mentioned anything personal about Donald Trump, every network cut in live to my speeches, hoping I would say more of it — so then they could go on the air and say, that's so sad.

Subtitle: We're going to keep giving it coverage to help our ratings. The media needs to begin to examine the role it's played in creating this atmosphere. I know it's good for ratings, but it's really detrimental to our political culture, and to our country at large.

Marco Rubio, Rubio Campaign Press Release - MUST WATCH: Marco Rubio Has the Perfect Response to the Trump Phenomenon Getting So Scary Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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