UPDATE: CNN's Jake Tapper asked Trump about whether he was contributing to an atmosphere of violence at his rallies during the debate last night; the billionaire said he hoped not.Tapper read off a series of statements that Trump has made at past rallies that suggest otherwise.
A Trump supporter sucker punched a protester at a rally for billionaire Donald Trump in North Carolina on Wednesday. The assailant, identified as 78-year-old John McGraw, said the protester “deserved it,” and that “next time we see him, we might have to kill him.” RedState’s Sara Gonzalez noted that the victim, 26-year-old Rakeem Jones, was acting rambunctiously in his own right; giving the middle finger to attendees in the rally as he was being escorted off the premises. Yet, she observed that it’s a bit interesting that police didn’t do anything after the punch, or more accurately elbow, was thrown.
Yet, McGraw didn’t escape the long arm of the law; he was arrested for assault yesterday (via WRAL):
A 78-year-old Linden man has been charged with assaulting a protester at the rally held in Fayetteville Wednesday for Republican front-runner Donald Trump.
John Franklin McGraw was arrested Thursday morning and charged with assault and battery and disorderly conduct, according to the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office.
“I was walking up the stairs. The railing was in front of me, as a matter of fact there was two other people in front of me, they walked past and I was really not paying attention to them so I’m walking and as soon as I turned, he hit me,” said Jones. "He hit me dead in my eye." 4
Jones was part of a group who started shouting in protest minutes after Trump took the stage Wednesday night. He said he gave McGraw the middle finger after he and many other attendees began yelling at the protesting group. Jones' group was the first of many protesters to be thrown out of the event.
In the video, taken by Inside Edition, where McGraw said that Jones deserved to be punched by him, he also said that he could be part of a terrorist organization:
INSIDE EDITION tracked down the supporter, 78-year-old John McGraw, who was unrepentant.
When asked if he liked the rally, he said: “You bet I liked it. Knocking the hell out of that big mouth.”
And when asked why he punched the protester, he said: "Number one, we don’t know if he’s ISIS. We don’t know who he is, but we know he’s not acting like an American, cussing me... If he wants it laid out, I laid it out."
He added: “Yes, he deserved it. The next time we see him, we might have to kill him. We don’t know who he is. He might be with a terrorist organization.”
Well, it’s come to this, folks.