While leaving the White House grounds Thursday night after attending President Donald Trump’s speech at the Republican National Convention, attendees were confronted, harassed, and even attacked by angry mobs of rioters.
Senator Rand Paul, R-KY, was one of the victims. He wrote on Twitter early Friday morning that he was “attacked by an angry mob of over 100” and thanked the D.C. police for “literally saving our lives from a crazed mob.”
Sen. Paul told “Fox & Friends” Friday morning of the “horrific” scene. “Our hotel was only right across the street from the White House. But we couldn’t go because the mob was already chasing people down that chose to go out that exit,” he said.
Secret Service directed the attendees to get on a bus to the Trump hotel, which took 45 minutes, he added. The couple chose to order an Uber to their hotel but they had to be dropped off blocks away because of road closures and walk, and Paul said it was a ‘regrettable’ choice.
The mob noticed them and immediately began approaching the couple, and the group grew in size.
“As they were surrounding us… the policemen were forming a barricade with their bodies,” he explained. “I whispered to the policeman, ‘they know who I am, you’ve got to get reinforcements, it’s going to get worse.’ He called for reinforcements, but we didn’t get any reinforcements. We waited, but the crowd was getting bigger and bigger and pushing in. They were yelling threats, they were trying to push the police over to get to me, they were grabbing at us, and it got worse and worse. And then finally we decided to make a move… and they were shouting threats to us, to kill us, to hurt us, but they’re also shouting ‘say her name, Breonna Taylor.’
“You couldn’t reason with this mob, but I’m actually the author of the Breonna Taylor law to end no-knock raids, so the irony is lost on these idiots that they’re trying to kill the person that’s actually trying to get rid on these no-knock raids.”
“We’ve got to wake up. We can’t have Joe Biden rule the country and have no police. I mean, we can’t walk down the street in D.C. safely now. That’s how bad it is.”
Further, it’s his belief that the rioters “were paid to come here,” later adding that “my feeling is that there’s interstate criminal traffic being paid for across state lines, but you won’t know unless you arrest them.”
He said he will “probably” need security around D.C. and called for rioters to be arrested and questioned, saying its the only way to end the violence and lawlessness.
Here’s the video of rioters attacking Sen. Paul, his wife, and the police:
The mob also stood at a White House gate, where RNC attendees were exiting. They were shouting expletives and harassing the guests.
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Cuomo says he’ll ‘fully cooperate’ with NY AG’s review of sexual harassment claims
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said Wednesday that he will “fully cooperate” with the state attorney general’s independent review into sexual harassment allegations made against the currently scandal-ridden governor, saying, “I fully support a woman’s right to come forward.”
Last Wednesday, Lindsey Boylan, who served in his administration for over three years, accused Cuomo of suggesting to her on a 2017 flight that they play strip poker, inappropriate touching, and kissing her on the lips without her consent.
Following Boylan’s accusations, 25-year-old Charlotte Bennett alleged the governor indicated interest in having an affair with her while she was serving in his administration as a health policy adviser. In a Saturday New York Times report, Bennett told the newspaper that Cuomo asked her if she had “ever been with an older man,” adding that “age doesn’t matter” in relationships.
At Wednesday’s press briefing, the Empire State governor addressed the accusations leveled against him over the past seven days by three women and New York Attorney General Letitia James’ (D) independent review into those claims, which she announced on Monday was formally proceeding.
“As you probably know, the attorney general is doing an independent review, and I will fully cooperate with that review,” Cuomo said at the beginning of his statement. “Now, the lawyers say I shouldn’t say anything when you have a pending review until that review is over. I understand that, I’m a lawyer, too. But, I want New Yorkers to hear from me directly on this.”
“First, I fully support a woman’s right to come forward,” the governor began. “And I think it should be encouraged in every way. I now understand that I acted in a way that made people feel uncomfortable. It was unintentional and I truly and deeply apologize for it. I feel awful about it, and frankly I am embarrassed by it, and that’s not easy to say. But that’s the truth.”
This echoes what Cuomo said in a Sunday statement about the allegations, in which he stated he “may have been insensitive” during his tenure but charged his accusers of misinterpreting his actions, saying, “I acknowledge some of the things I have said have been misinterpreted as an unwanted flirtation… I am truly sorry about that.”
During his Wednesday remarks, Cuomo iterated “I never touched anyone inappropriately,” repeated that sentence, then said “I never knew at the time that I was making anyone feel uncomfortable” and repeated that one too.
“And I certainly never, ever meant to offend anyone or hurt anyone or cause anyone any pain. That is the last thing I would ever want to do,” he continued. “I ask the people of this state to wait for the facts from the attorney general’s report before forming an opinion. Get the facts, please, before forming an opinion.”
“I also want you to know that I have learned from what has been an incredibly difficult situation for me as well as other people, and I’ve learned an important lesson,” the governor said at the end of his statement. “I’m sorry. I’m sorry for whatever pain I caused anyone, I never intended it, and I will be the better for this experience.”
Amid Boylan and Bennett’s allegations, another report of Cuomo sexually harassing a woman has cropped up. On Monday, a woman named Anna Ruch accused the governor of placing his hands on her cheeks—without her consent—at a 2019 wedding reception and asking if he could kiss her. A photograph of the two together at the event has also been circulating on social media.
Asked at Wednesday’s briefing about the pictures that have resurfaced of him being touchy with people, particularly that of him and Ruch, the governor claimed that it is his way of greeting people.
“I understand the opinion of—and feelings of—Ms. Ruch,” Cuomo said. “You can find hundreds of pictures of me making the same gesture with hundreds of people—women, children, men, etc. You can go find hundreds of pictures of me kissing people. […] It is my usual and customary way of greeting.”
Moreover, the governor said that his father, former Gov. Mario Cuomo, would do the same thing.
“By the way, it was my father’s way of greeting people,” Cuomo said, explaining, “You’re the governor of the state, you want people to feel comfortable, you want to reach out to them.”
He also mentioned that he kisses and hugs legislators and noted that at an event in Queens the other day he hugged pastors and state assembly members.
Furthermore, the governor said that his intent “doesn’t matter,” saying, “What it matters is if anybody was offended by it.”
“But if they were offended by it, then it was wrong,” he added, going on to say that if they were offended or hurt by it, he apologizes.
You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @Douglas_P_Braff.
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