Nicolle Wallace, a former communications director for President George Bush, often uses her cable news platform to decry President Donald Trump’s controversial rhetoric.
In a segment of MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House” on Thursday, the host offered a glimpse behind the scenes of a 2016 presidential debate that she said evoked a sense of dismay on behalf of then-candidate Jeb Bush. Wallace worked as Jeb Bush’s press secretary while he was Florida’s governor.
The show’s panel was discussing the former governor’s decision to engage with Trump following a particularly vicious string of insults, The Hill reported.
Former Republican Committee Chairman Michael Steele said that “if any of the Republicans on that stage backed Jeb Bush up” during the heated exchange, the primary race might have changed.
Wallace then announced that she told the candidate he should have responded to Trump’s offensive words with physical force, which set off some conservative commentators including Donald Trump Jr.
“I told Jeb Bush after the debate that I thought he should have punched him in the face,” Wallace said.
The host went on to list a few of the factors she said would have justified such a response and earned Jeb Bush “hero” status for standing up to the political bully.
“Even if you lost, he insulted your wife, he came down the escalator and called Mexicans rapists and murderers,” Wallace added. “He said, ‘What do you think I should have done?’ I said, ‘I think you should have punched him in the face and then gotten out of the race. You would have been a hero.'”
Is anyone shocked that the left wants people to resort to violence? https://t.co/hqGzCUgrSL
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) October 11, 2018
The younger Trump retweeted The Daily Wire reporter Ryan Saavedra’s post on the segment, adding his own caption to the associated video.
“Is anyone shocked that the left wants people to resort to violence?”
Some conservatives are concerned that calls for political activism on the left will translate to physical violence.
Earlier this year, U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., urged Trump critics to harass individuals in the administration.
“I want to tell you, these members of his cabinet who remain and try to defend him, they won’t be able to go to a restaurant, they won’t be able to stop at a gas station, they’re not going to be able to shop at a department store,” she said in June. “The people are going to turn on them.”
More recently, the wife of Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., penned an open letter to Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., to ask him to rescind a call for activism, Scope News reported.
Earlier this year, Booker encouraged protesters to “get up in the face of some congresspeople.”
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