WASHINGTON (NBC News) — Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump says violent protests like the ones in Charlotte over the past two nights will not be tolerated if he is elected president.
“We honor and recognize the right of all Americans to peacefully assemble, protest, and demonstrate. But there is no right to engage in violent disruption,” Trump said.
Speaking in Pittsburgh, he went on to toughen his stance supporting police, saying they are the line between civilization and chaos, while acknowledging officers actions must be scrutinized.
“We must do everything we can to ensure they are properly trained, respect all members of the public, and any wrongdoing is always and it will be, by them, vigorously addressed,” Trump said.
Trump said the protests were another sign that America needs “unity” and using it as an example of why “we need a national anti-crime agenda to make our cities safe again.” The Republican nominee went on to say he recognized the right of the people to assemble, protest, and demonstrate but that people have “no right” to violently disrupt or threaten the peace and safety of others.
Trump added that “our job is not to make life more comfortable for the violent disruptor, but to make life more comfortable for the African-American parent trying to raise their kids in peace, to walk their children to school, and to get their children great educations. We have to cherish and protect those people.”
Trump also advocated for “a national anti-crime agenda to make our cities safe again.”
Democratic vice presidential nominee Senator Tim Kaine, speaking in Nevada, said Hillary Clinton wants to invest in more training for community policing to head off problems before they start.
“There is a need to build better bridges between law enforcement and the communities they serve,” Kaine said.