Perhaps watching cable news coverage of the Boston rally and counter-protests, President Donald Trump just tweeted, “Looks like many anti-police agitators in Boston. Police are looking tough and smart! Thank you.”
In a second tweet, Trump wrote, “Great job by all law enforcement officers and Boston mayor.” (See the tweets below).
Boston police subsequently confirmed that rocks had been thrown at officers, and asked “individuals to refrain from throwing urine, bottles and other harmful projectiles at our officers.”
Although the right-wing Free Speech Rally was declared “officially over” by Boston police a couple hours ago, with the few dozen Rally-goers apparently dispersing before any planned speeches could be made, the far larger number of counter-protesters – crowd estimates at the day’s peak were in the 15,000-20,000 range – remained near Boston Common.
The president made no mention of the white nationalists who organized the Free Speech Rally.
Boston police are scheduled to hold a press conference at 4:30 pm ET.
Trump’s tweets generally coincided with live shots on Fox News Channel, MSNBC and CNN of Boston police maintaining lines between opposing marchers, crowd skirmishes and an apparent arrest. At various moments, police and protesters appeared to be shoving one another, and at one point police could be seen chasing a man running down a street.
Despite the president’s tweets, today’s fizzled, right-wing Free Speech Rally and the much larger counter-protests were markedly without the violence and bloodshed of last weekend’s tragedy in Charlottesville, Virginia. Boston police reportedly made some arrests today, though an official number had not been confirmed prior to the press conference.
Here are Trump’s tweets:
The president’s tweets drew quick responses on twitter, pro and con. Here’s one of the cons, from Trial & Error actor Steven Boyer: