At a rally on Monday in Asheville, North Carolina, while Donald Trump was in the middle of trying to convince everyone that his supporters are not “deplorables,” as Hillary Clinton recently characterized many of them as being, a man choked, punched and slapped protesters.
A group of eight demonstrators began shouting from the stands, exchanging words with Trump supporters. The man, who has not been identified, escalated the situation and became violent. Video shows him holding onto one of the male protesters by the neck and shirt, choking him and throwing a punch. A Trump campaign staffer gets between the men and begins escorting the protesters out. The Trump supporter then takes a slap at one of the female protesters.
Police officers, stationed throughout the arena, did not become involved. The protesters were removed from the rally but the unidentified Trump supporter was allowed to stay, reports CNN.
Moments earlier, Trump brought out a group of supporters, declaring them “hardworking Americans,” not “deplorables.”
After the demonstrators were removed a woman in a hijab tried to sit down and the man told her, “Get out!” He raised his arms over his head, fists clenched, in a victorious stance.
There have been multiple instances of violence at Trump rallies in the past, and the candidate once claimed he would like to punch a demonstrator in the face. A supporter was charged with assault in March after he punched a protester as he was being escorted out of the building. Trump suggested he might pay for the man’s legal fees.
Watch video of the incident below.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) September 13, 2016