Updated May 29, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Trump threatens to "assume control" of Minneapolis over unrest

Flames from a nearby fire illuminate protesters standing on a barricade in front of the Third Police Precinct on May 28, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota
Flames from a nearby fire illuminate protesters standing on a barricade in front of the Third Police Precinct in Minneapolis on Thursday. Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump threatened via Twitter early Friday to send the national guard to Minneapolis following three days of massive demonstrations and unrest in the city over George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody this week.

Details: "I can't stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis. A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right," Trump tweeted after a police station was torched by some protesters.

"These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won't let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!"
— Trump's tweet, later labeled by Twitter as violating the company's rules
  • Twitter said Friday morning that Trump's tweet mentioning "shooting" violated the company's rules about glorifying violence. The company said it was leaving the tweet up in the public interest.

What they're saying: Frey shook his head when a reporter at a news conference told him of Trump's tweets."Weakness is refusing to take responsibility for your own actions," he said. "Weakness is pointing your finger at somebody else during a time of crisis."

"Donald Trump knows nothing about the strength of Minneapolis. We are strong as hell. Is this a difficult time period? Yes. But you better be damn sure that we’re going to get through this."

Of note: Minnesota's governor on Thursday activated the state's national guard over the unrest, as the nation waits to see if the officers involved will be charged with murder.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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