Wisconsin governor asks Trump to "reconsider" Kenosha visit
Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers on Sunday asked President Trump to "reconsider" his upcoming visit to Kenosha as the city continues to be roiled by protests after Jacob Blake, a Black man, was shot several times in the back by police last weekend. Mr. Trump's visit will be one week after two people were shot and killed at a protest over Blake's shooting.
"I, along with other community leaders who have reached out, are concerned about what your presence will mean for Kenosha and our state," Evers wrote in a letter to Mr. Trump, according to CBS Milwaukee affiliate WDJT. "I am concerned your presence will only hinder our healing. I am concerned your presence will only delay our work to overcome division and move forward together."
Mr. Trump is planning to visit Kenosha on Tuesday. An attorney for Jacob Blake's family told "Face the Nation" on Sunday that the family had not been contacted about meeting Mr. Trump.
"The Blake family is very respectful of all our elected officials and as his mother says, she prays for all of our elected officials," said attorney Benjamin Crump.
Meanwhile, a 17-year-old has been arrested and charged with two counts of first degree homicide and one count of attempted homicide for a shooting on August 25. Some in the far right have celebrated the teen, Kyle Rittenhouse, who is White, and traveled from Illinois armed with an AR-15.
Mr. Trump said on Saturday that the shooting is "under investigation" and said "we're looking at it very, very carefully."
Wisconsin's lieutenant governor, Mandela Barnes, told CNN that Mr. Trump shouldn't visit.
"They centered an entire convention around creating more animosity and creating more division around what's going on in Kenosha," said Barnes, a Democrat. "So I don't know how, given any of the previous statements that the president made, that he intends to come here to be helpful, and we absolutely don't need that right now."
Barnes tweeted that if Mr. Trump isn't "coming to recognize the celebration of community that's going on right now, then keep it."
"There is too much good starting to happen in Kenosha. The city was on fire and we need healing, not a barrel of gasoline rolling in," Barnes added.
Although Mr. Trump at the Republican National Convention decried "Democrat-run cities" like Kenosha and Portland, Oregon, he has praised that federal agents have been sent into Kenosha. A White House official said Sunday that "without the leadership of President Trump, Kenosha and its citizens would still be living in fear."
Mr. Trump said Saturday that he would "probably" visit Kenosha and praised the actions of the National Guard: "Within a few minutes of the Guard, everybody cleared out and it became safe."
At last week's Republican National Convention, Mr. Trump and Republicans pushed a message of law and order. Speakers included Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the St. Louis couple who were captured in a viral video pointing guns at protesters, and Ann Dorn, whose husband was killed in June during a violent night after protests in St. Louis.
Vice President Mike Pence said said four more years of the Trump administration would bring "law and order on the streets of America for every American of every race and creed and color."
Mr. Trump stressed that the GOP "in the strongest possible terms" condemns the looting, arson and violence that has occurred in Wisconsin and elsewhere, and issued a forceful denunciation of the violence in major U.S. cities, including Portland, where he deployed federal law enforcement this summer.
"As long as I am president, I will defend the absolute right of every American citizen to live in security, dignity and peace," he said.
Nikole Killion contributed to this report.
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