- By David FrancisDavid Francis is a staff writer for Foreign Policy, where he oversees FP's breaking news blog, The Cable. An award-winning journalist, David has reported from all over Europe, Nigeria, Kenya, Mexico, and Afghanistan on terrorism, national security, the geopolitics of energy, global economics, and the European financial crisis. His work has been published in outlets including the Christian Science Monitor, the Financial Times Deutschland, Slate, and SportsIllustrated.com.
Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump has injected a far-right, nationalist streak of populism into the 2016 campaign unique to modern presidential elections. He’s also introduced threats of violence towards opponents, Muslims, and Hispanics without recent precedent.
His latest threat came Monday night, ahead of Tuesday’s Nevada caucuses. During a rally in Las Vegas, Trump said he wanted to punch a protester “in the face.” Here’s the complete rant:
This kind of rhetoric is unique to Trump’s campaign, but it’s not uncommon in 2016’s ugly underbelly. Trump, or those speaking on his behalf, often invoke violence. Here are just some of the available examples:
-Last Friday, during his final rally in South Carolina — a state he would win the next day — Trump trotted out a story about how World War I Gen. John Pershing dealt with a “terrorism problem” by shooting Muslim militants with bullets dipped in pig’s blood, even though it’s false. It’s also highly offensive: consumption of pork is prohibited in Islam.
-A number of #BlackLivesMatter protesters have been kicked out of Trump rallies, some forcefully. In this Nov. 21, 2015 rally in Alabama, Trump urges his supporters to “get them the hell out of here.”
Here’s the video of his backers doing Trump’s bidding.
— Jeremy Diamond (@JDiamond1) November 21, 2015
-During an October 2015 rally in Richmond, Va., a Trump supporter was recorded spitting on a student immigration activist protesting the billionaire businessman (language NSFW).
— Jeremy Diamond (@JDiamond1) October 15, 2015
-He’s also threatened to fight #BlackLivesMatter protesters if they tried to take the microphone from him during a rally.