Speaking at a rally Saturday outside St. Louis, Missouri, Hillary Clinton accused Donald Trump of “political arson” over the fallout of his failed rally in Chicago in which protesters and Trump supporters clashed.
Clinton, echoing both Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, put all the blame on Trump, who had this morning tried to deflect it onto Bernie Sanders. She told supporters at the O’Fallon Park Recreation Complex that,
“The ugly, divisive rhetoric we are hearing from Donald Trump and the encouragement of violence and aggression is wrong, and it’s dangerous.”
“If you play with matches, you’re going to start a fire you can’t control. That’s not leadership. That’s political arson. The test of leadership and citizenship is the opposite. If you see bigotry, oppose it. If you see violence, condemn it. And if you see a bully, stand up to him.”
Watch courtesy of CNN:
Clinton offered a counterpoint to Trump’s hate:
“The test of leadership and citizenship is the opposite. If you see bigotry, oppose it. If you see violence, condemn it. And if you see a bully, stand up to him.”
Trump is drawing on anger, and this is something real and acknowledged by both Sanders and Clinton. As Clinton put it today,
“Many people have gotten a raw deal for too long. Our economy and our politics have failed to deliver results the way they should. But I believe with all my heart the only way to fix what’s broken is to stand together.”
Dismissing Trump’s appeal to hatred of the “other,” the Democratic frontrunner told supporters that the solution “is to stand together against the forces of division and discrimination that are trying to divide America between us and them.”
Clinton told the crowd,
“You don’t get the chance to make America great by getting rid of everything that made America great. No, our values, our diversity, our openness, these are strengths, not weaknesses.”
While Trump appears to think the best way to send a message is by promoting violence and intimidation, Clinton suggested voting:
“I want us to roll up our sleeves and get to work and to stand against this tide of bullying and bigotry and blustering that is going on in our political system. The best way to do that is to turn everybody we can out to vote on Tuesday. Send a clear message.”
There is a world of difference between Donald Trump and his Democratic opponents. And Hillary Clinton is right: Donald Trump is playing with fire.