Illinois state Sen. Martin Sanodval (D-Chicago) apologized Sunday after photos from his fundraiser surfaced showing a mock assassination of someone wearing a mask depicting President Trump.
A political fundraiser for @SenatorSandoval simulates an assassination attempt against a mock @realDonaldTrump decked out in Mexican garb. Looks like a man pointed a fake assault weapon at the fake President to pose for a picture. pic.twitter.com/MlT9zjB1mn— Mark Maxwell (@MarkMaxwellTV) August 17, 2019
“The incident that took place is unacceptable,” he told CBS 2. “I don’t condone violence toward the President or anyone else. I apologize that something like this happened at my event.”
Donors paid a minimum of $250 to attend Sandoval’s golf outing at the Klein Creek Golf Club in west suburban Winfield. A woman who attended the event posted the photos to her Facebook page on Saturday and tagged Sandoval in them. (WCIA)
Local media reported that it was unclear whether Sandoval knew whether the incident took place, but there was a photo of him standing next to the person who had the fake machine gun.
Democrats and Republicans expressed outrage over what happened at the fundraiser on Friday night.
“As our nation grapples with the epidemic of gun violence, purposely pointing a fake gun at anyone is insensitive and wrong,” Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker said on Saturday. “I condemn actions like the ones displayed in the pictures because they lack the civility our politics demands.”
Illinois Republican Party Chairman Tim Schneider said if staffers or volunteers were involved in the photo they should be fired.
“The apology from Sen. Sandoval for the detestable pictures from his event depicting an assassination of President Trump is too little, too late,” Schneider said through a spokesman, reports WCIA. “Dangerous imagery like this will be condemned and seen as inappropriate by people of sound mind; however, a mentally unstable individual who wants to harm President Trump might find them as an inspiration. It’s inexcusable for an elected official to allow the promotion of violence in any way. If the individual pictured is a staffer or volunteer, they should be terminated immediately.”
White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, meanwhile, said other Democrats should be asked about the photo.
Every Democrat should be asked if they support or disavow this. https://t.co/7nRXtzIXqz— Kellyanne Conway (@KellyannePolls) August 19, 2019