Maybe Donald Trump can be a unifier, after all.
Democratic and Republican presidential candidates, who agree on virtually nothing, have all in some form condemned the episodes of violence at Mr. Trump’s campaign events. While Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders have predictably criticized the billionaire real estate developer, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, two of the four Republican candidates left in the race, recently denounced Mr. Trump for encouraging violence. Even Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, though reluctant to fault Mr. Trump for the clashes at a Chicago campaign rally he ultimately canceled, has said the realty TV star is partially responsible for the chaos at other events.
“Donald Trump has created a toxic environment,” Mr. Kasich told reporters in Ohio today. “And a toxic environment has allowed his supporters and those who sometimes seek confrontation to come together in violence. There is no place for this, there is no place for a national leader to prey on the fears of people who live in our great country.”
Mr. Trump blamed Mr. Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, for sending protesters to disrupt his Chicago rally, though Mr. Sanders shot back earlier today that the Republican front-runner is a “pathological liar.” MoveOn.org, a liberal group that has endorsed Mr. Sanders, said it printed fliers for Trump protesters in Chicago. There’s no evidence the Vermont independent was directly involved in coordinating protests, however.
Other incidents have drawn the ire of Mr. Trump’s rivals and critics. A reporter for the conservative website Brietbart News accused Mr. Trump’s campaign manager of forcefully yanking her arm when she tried to ask the Republican a question in a Florida. (Mr. Trump denies this happened.) At a rally in North Carolina earlier this week, a white Trump supporter sucker-punched a black protester. Mr. Trump has encouraged violence against the people who disrupt his rallies; members of the media say they have not felt safe at times during the raucous events.
Even Mr. Cruz, who only began to attack Mr. Trump when it became clear he was a favorite to win the nomination, recently said his rival “affirmatively encourages violence.”
Ms. Clinton, who attended Mr. Trump’s wedding a decade ago and once took his campaign contributions, has not challenged the reality TV star as furiously as Mr. Sanders. In a statement released today, she said the violence at Mr. Trump’s Chicago rally was a “grave concern to us all,” though she refrained from directly using his name.
“The divisive rhetoric we are seeing should be of grave concern to us all. We all have our differences, and we know many people across the country feel angry,” Ms. Clinton said. “We need to address that anger together. All of us, no matter what party we belong to or what views we hold, should not only say loudly and clearly that violence has no place in our politics, we should use our words and deeds to bring Americans together.”
Disclosure: Donald Trump is the father-in-law of Jared Kushner, the publisher of Observer Media.