Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump at Wednesday night’s debate echoed allegations made by conservative activist James O’Keefe that Democrats incited violence at his campaign rallies.
From The Hill
His comments came after he was asked about the multiple women who have accused him of sexual misconduct. He said that he thought it was possible the women had been deployed by Clinton’s campaign.
“Just like if you look at what came out today on the clips, where I was wondering, ‘What happened with my rally in Chicago and other rallies where we had such violence?’” he said. “She’s the one, and Obama, that caused the violence.
“They hired people, they paid them $1,500, and they’re on tape saying be violent, cause fights, do bad things.”
He was referencing video released by O’Keefe, known for his undercover video projects, that suggest Democrats were involved in sparking violence at Trump rallies. One of the men in the video was fired, while the other said he was “stepping away” stepped away from his position as a result of the footage.
O’Keefe’s critics have accused him of unfairly editing his videos. White House press secretary Josh Earnest on Wednesday said that viewers should take them with “a whole packet of salt.”
“I’ve been asked about videos that have come from this outlet in the past, and each time I have tried to urge people to take those reports not at face value,” he said. “Because despite what the name might suggest, these videos have not often revealed the truth.”
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