‘Beto…should respect the victims and law enforcement…’
(Jonathan Tilove, Austin American-Statesman) Ahead of his visit to El Paso, Texas, Wednesday in the aftermath of Saturday’s massacre at a Walmart that left 22 dead and more than two dozen wounded, President Donald Trump tweeted late Tuesday night that former U.S. Rep. Robert Francis O’Rourke (“Beto”), who has said Trump is not welcome in El Paso, should “respect the victims and law enforcement and be quiet.”
“Beto (phony name to indicate Hispanic heritage) O’Rourke, who is embarrassed by my last visit to the Great State of Texas, where I trounced him, and is now even more embarrassed by polling at 1% in the Democratic Primary, should respect the victims and law enforcement — & be quiet!” Trump tweeted.
O’Rourke tweeted in reply that, “22 people in my hometown are dead after an act of terror inspired by your racism. El Paso will not be quiet and neither will I.”
O’Rourke has been unsparing in his criticism of the president and what he considers his culpability in inspiring the 21-year-old suspect in the shooting, who has been linked to an online posting just before he acted saying “this attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”
On Sunday night, O’Rourke, who had returned home from the presidential campaign trail after getting word of the tragedy in his hometown, was asked by a reporter, “Is there anything in your mind that the president could do now to make this any better?”
‘What do you think? You know the s—- he’s been saying. He’s been calling Mexican immigrants rapists and criminals,” O’Rourke replied. “It’s these questions that you know the answers to. I mean, connect the dots about what he’s been doing in this country. He’s not tolerating racism; he’s promoting racism. He’s not tolerating violence; he’s inciting racism and violence in this country. So, you know, I just — I don’t know what kind of question that is.”
O’Rourke tweeted that, “This president who helped create the hatred that made Saturday’s tragedy possible, should not come to El Paso. We do not need more division. We need to heal. He has no place here.”
The president’s reference to having “trounced” O’Rourke on a previous visit to Texas is apparently a reference to his “finish the wall” rally at the El Paso County Coliseum in February, and a nearby counter rally at which O’Rourke appeared, and an exaggerated estimation by Trump of their relative crowd size.
©2019 Austin American-Statesman, Texas. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC. Liberty Headlines editor Paul Chesser contributed.