Trump kicked off his visit to El Paso by insulting Beto O'Rourke

Marianne Eloise@marianne_eloise
Wednesday 07 August 2019 16:00
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(Getty)

Trump is due to spend today in El Paso to “help heal” the city after the weekend’s mass shooting.

He’s starting his tour in his usual style, by telling El Paso native and presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke to “be quiet” and mocking his nickname with a discredited but oft-repeated claim that O’Rourke only has that name to appeal to Hispanic voters.

Trump tweeted:

Beto (phony name to indicate Hispanic heritage) O’Rourke, who is embarrassed by my last visit to the Great State of Texas, where I trounced him, and is now even more embarrassed by polling at 1% in the Democrat Primary, should respect the victims & law enforcement — & be quiet!

O'Rourke's birth name is Robert Francis O’Rourke, with Beto being a childhood nickname that stuck and followed him into later life. He's regularly been criticised over his name by his political opponents and in March last year shared a photo of himself as a child wearing a jumper with 'Beto' stitched into the front.

O’Rourke swiftly shut down Trump's Twitter attack, responding: “22 people are dead in my hometown after an act of terror inspired by your racism. El Paso will not be quiet and neither will I”.

His attacks on O’Rourke don’t come as that much as a surprise considering how forthcoming O’Rourke has been with his criticisms of Trump’s anti-immigrant rhetoric.

At a vigil for the victims on Sunday, O’Rourke said:

We have a president right now who traffics in this hatred, who incites this violence, who calls Mexican immigrants rapists and criminals, calls asylum seekers animals and an infestation.

More: El Paso shooting: Trump ‘invited terrorism’ ahead of atrocity that killed 22, says Beto O’Rourke

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