By Bronte Price, PoliticKING
In recent weeks, as Republican front-runner Donald Trump makes his final campaign rounds, it's impossible to ignore the fact that Trump’s rallies are becoming increasingly violent. More protesters are showing up and more supporters appear to be lashing out.
All of this came to a head in Chicago last week where, for the first time, Trump allegedly canceled his event because of the protests. 6,000 people showed up to support Trump, and roughly 2,500 people were present to protest against him on the streets, while hundreds more were inside.
While waiting for the GOP candidate in Chicago, reports surfaced claiming Trump supporters chanted things like “U-S-A,” and, “Build that wall,” and “We want Trump!”
Once it was announced that Trump would not be appearing, chaos began to break out. “Please go in peace,” an official told the crowd from the stage Friday night, which, according to Politico, was the moment the violence began. The protests occurred both inside and outside the venue, resulting in five arrests and two police officers we also injured.
— Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) March 12, 2016
Following the Chicago mayhem, Trump accused Bernie Sanders' supporters of creating unrest at his events and he refused to back down from his rhetoric.
"Some represented Bernie, our communist friend," Trump said in Dayton, Ohio, at his first campaign appearance after Chicago. Later that day, Trump called protesters at his Cleveland event, "Bernie's crowd."
"You know Bernie was saying Mr. Trump should speak to his crowd," Trump said. "You know where they come from? Bernie's crowd. They're Bernie's crowd."
Trump then began calling on police to start arresting protesters at a rally in Kansas City. "I'm going to ask that you arrest them," Trump said to the police. "I'll file whatever charges you want. If they want to do this ... we're going to go strongly for your arrests." Trump said arresting protesters would "ruin the rest of their lives" by giving them a "big arrest mark."
"Once that starts happening, we're not going to have any more protesters, folks," Trump said.
Police used pepper spray at least twice at the protest on Saturday night. The Kansas City Police Department tweeted that they, “had to use pepper spray 2 times outside Trump rally and arrested two people who refused to follow law."
We had to use pepper spray 2 times outside Trump rally and arrested 2 people who refused to follow law. (1/2)
— Kansas City Police (@kcpolice) March 13, 2016
— Chris (@stokith) March 13, 2016
Bernie Sanders spoke out against the violence on Saturday, insisting that his supporters were not to blame for the unrest. "I don't think our supporters are inciting. What our supporters are doing is responding to a candidate who has, in fact, in many ways, encouraged violence," Sanders said during a news conference. "When he talks about ... 'I wish we were in the old days when you could punch somebody in the head.' What do you think that says to his supporters?"
Here’s what Rep. Brad Wenstrup has to say about Trump’s behavior as the GOP front-runner:
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