Just minutes after slamming “terrorizing acts” and calling for unity on Friday after a series of mail bombs were sent to Democrats this week, President Donald Trump chuckled at the suggestion of locking up liberal billionaire George Soros, one of the intended bombing targets.
Trump was in the East Wing with reporters and a cheering group of young black conservatives at a leadership summit shortly after the FBI arrested a bomb suspect in Florida: Cesar Sayoc, a 56-year-old Trump supporter.
The president declared that “these terrorizing acts are despicable.” He added: “Americans must unify, and we must show the world that as Americas we are united in peace and love and harmony.”
But just 18 minutes later, as he attacked “globalists” who are “cheating” American workers, leadership summit members in the audience called out “Soros!” At least one shouted out: “Lock him up!” Trump chuckled, pointed to the individual in the audience and repeated: “Lock him up.”
The exchange can be seen below.
Trump’s messaging on the pipe bombs has been mixed all week long. Before dawn on Friday, he tweeted the word “bomb” in quotes, indicating the devices didn’t actually exist. The tweet appeared to support right-wing conspiracy theorists’ claim that the bombs were a “false flag” concocted by liberals to make the president and his supporters look bad.
As he headed to another campaign rally on Friday, Trump told a reporter “we’ll probably pass” on reaching out to pipe bomb targets Barack Obama and Bill and Hillary Clinton as a courtesy.
He also said he wouldn’t “tone down” his campaign rhetoric attacking Democrats, adding that he “could tone up,” CNBC reported.
He did express regret about the bombs in a tweet ― because they were slowing Republicans’ “momentum” at the polls.