Some Democrats are reportedly concerned that public appeals to “absolutely harass” Trump administration officials will come back to hurt them in the polls and benefit Republicans.
There have been several recent instances where Trump officials have been publically shamed, including Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen at a Mexican restaurant and White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders, who was asked to leave by an owner of a restaurant in Virginia.
The Washington Post’s editorial board wrote a column titled, “Let the Trump team eat in peace.” The paper identified the heightened state of “passions” in the country, but saw no benefit in protesters interrupting dinners.
Democrats warned that these public encounters could win sympathy for the Trump administration, The Los Angeles Times reported.
Rep. Maxine Waters, in the meantime, is not backing down from her weekend comments calling for people to confront members of the Trump administration at gas stations and anywhere else they’re seen in public.
“If you see anybody from that 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 anymore, anywhere,” Waters said Saturday, later telling MSNBC that protesters are “going to absolutely harass them.”
The comments were in response to Trump’s “zero-tolerance” immigration policy that led to families being separated at the U.S.- Mexico border.
Waters argued her comments have been misconstrued, claiming she wasn’t calling for protesters to actually “harm” Cabinet members.
“Trump is the one who is creating lies,” Waters said during a Monday afternoon news conference. “Trying to have people believe that I talked about harming people. There’s nowhere in my statement, anytime, anyplace that we talked about harm.”
Trump worked to try and make Waters’ a spokewoman for the entire party.
“Congresswoman Maxine Waters, an extraordinarily low IQ person, has become, together with Nancy Pelosi, the Face of the Democrat Party,” he tweeted on Monday. “She has just called for harm to supporters, of which there are many, of the Make America Great Again movement. Be careful what you wish for Max!”
David Axelrod, the former Obama campaign strategist, urged calm.
“Disgusted with this admin’s policies? Organize, donate, volunteer, VOTE! Rousting Cabinet members from restaurants is an empty and, ultimately, counter-productive gesture that won’t change a thing,” he said in a tweet, according to The Times.
Fox News’ Alex Pappas and the Associated Press contributed to this report