Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said he is a “uniter,” but the growing violence at his campaign events has led many to question whether Trump can unite his own party.
His supporters and opponents have fought in the last few days. Some people have been arrested.
At a Trump rally in North Carolina, one of his supporters punched a protestor who was being removed from the event. Another event planned for last Friday in Chicago was cancelled after a large group of protestors entered the building.
On Saturday, a protestor was stopped before he could reach Trump on the stage in Ohio. At rallies in Missouri, protestors repeatedly interrupted Trump’s speech and were removed by security.
Republican and Democratic opponents said Trump is responsible for the clashes at these events.
Senator Ted Cruz of Texas is Trump's leading Republican opponent. Cruz said that Trump’s campaign “encourages violence." And Ohio Governor John Kasich, another Republican candidate, added, “Donald Trump has created a toxic environment.”
Senator Marco Rubio of Florida is another Republican candidate. He criticized Trump for calling on his supporters to attack anti-Trump demonstrators. Speaking with CNN, Rubio compared Trump to a third-world dictator and said Trump’s campaign “is really going to do damage to America.”
Both Democratic candidates, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders also criticized Trump for his words and actions. But Trump told CNN that people linked to the Sanders campaign caused the violence in Chicago Friday. Trump said he should be praised for cancelling the event. Sanders said some of his supporters had protested at the event. But he said his campaign did not organize the protests.
All of the Republican candidates have promised to support the person who wins the party’s nomination at its convention in July. But in recent days both Rubio and Kasich have said they may not be able to do so if Trump is the nominee.
Although Trump has won many party caucuses and primaries, he does not have enough delegates to win the nomination yet. Some experts say party officials may act during the convention to try to stop Trump from gaining the nomination.
VOANews.com reported this story from Washington. Christopher Jones-Cruise adapted it for VOA Learning English. Hai Do was the editor.
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