President Donald Trump descended into a maniac rant late Tuesday night, lashing out at former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas), who has repeatedly assailed the president in the wake of a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas.
“Beto (phony name to indicate Hispanic heritage) O’Rourke, who is embarrassed by my last visit to the Great State of Texas, where I trounced him, and is now even more embarrassed by polling at 1% in the Democrat Primary, should respect the victims & law enforcement – & be quiet!” Trump tweeted.
Trump’s remarks come shortly after O’Rourke, a 2020 presidential contender, announced he would be attending an event on Wednesday to pay tribute to the shooting victims and counter Trump’s visit to the city.
“When President Trump comes to El Paso tomorrow, I will be joining our strong, beautiful, binational community at #ElPasoStrong. I hope to see you there,” O’Rourke tweeted earlier Tuesday night.
The El Paso native, who had previously run a competitive race against Sen. Ted Cruz (R) in 2018, has garnered new interested in recent days after a viral moment in the wake of the mass shooting on Saturday at a Walmart.
Asked by a reporter what Trump should do to prevent more mass shootings, a seemingly exasperated O’Rourke responded, “What do you think? You know the shit he’s been saying. He’s been calling Mexican immigrants rapists and criminals. I don’t know, like, members of the press, what the f—?”
The tragic incidents have left an opening for O’Rourke to regain the spotlight. The former congressman has gained little traction in the polls since announcing his candidacy for president earlier this year, with his debate performances doing little to improve his standing. But he has become the most prominent 2020 contender over the past week to address the shootings.
Earlier on Tuesday, O’Rourke said on CNN that the media can’t let Trump get off “scot-free” for his actions.
“This is the most racist President we’ve had since perhaps Andrew Johnson, in another age and another century, and he is responsible for the hatred and the violence that we’re seeing right now,” he said on CNN’s “Cuomo Prime Time.”
Read Trump’s tweet below.
Beto (phony name to indicate Hispanic heritage) O’Rourke, who is embarrassed by my last visit to the Great State of Texas, where I trounced him, and is now even more embarrassed by polling at 1% in the Democrat Primary, should respect the victims & law enforcement – & be quiet!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 7, 2019