Andrew Trunsky, DCNF
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi defended California Rep. Maxine Waters’ call for protesters to “get more confrontational” if former Minneapolis Police officer Derek Chauvin is acquitted of killing George Floyd.
Pelosi added that Waters’ comments, said Saturday in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, did not amount to inciting violence and that she should not apologize for them.
“Maxine talked about confrontation in the manner of the Civil Rights movement,” Pelosi told reporters Monday. “I myself think we should take our lead from the George Floyd family. They’ve handled this with great dignity and no ambiguity or lack of misinterpretation by either side.”
“No, no, I don’t think [Waters] should apologize,” Pelosi said.
“We’ve got to stay in the street, and we’ve got to get more active, we’ve got to get more confrontational,” Waters said Saturday. “We’ve got to make sure they know that we mean business.”
Protests, some of which have delved into riots and looting, have been ongoing in Brooklyn Center since Brooklyn Center Police officer Kim Potter fatally shot Daunte Wright after mistaking her gun for a taser. Wright, 20, died minutes after being shot, and Potter was arrested and charged with second-degree manslaughter on Wednesday.
Attorneys in Chauvin’s trial began their closing arguments Monday, and a verdict is expected in the coming days.
Waters made similar comments in 2018 where she encouraged people to harass Trump officials and supporters if seen in public.
“If you see anybody from [Trump’s] Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and you create a crowd, and you push back on them, and you tell them they’re not welcome,” she said.
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