Trump Calls Caravan Crashers ‘Patriots’

The man is unwell.

When a band of his supporters surrounded a Biden campaign caravan driving through Texas, causing a crash and cancelation of events, President Trump tweeted his enthusiastic support:

In a campaign rally last night, he doubled down:

President Donald Trump lashed out at the FBI on Sunday after it said it was investigating reports that a caravan of his supporters harassed a bus belonging to Joe Biden’s campaign.

“In my opinion, these patriots did nothing wrong,” Trump said in a tweet. “Instead, the FBI & Justice should be investigating the terrorists, anarchists, and agitators of ANTIFA, who run around burning down our Democrat run cities and hurting our people!”

The president also referred to the incident during rallies earlier Sunday. Video of the incident, which occurred Friday, showed Trump supporters surrounding the Biden campaign bus with their vehicles in Texas. The video showed two cars colliding, and the Biden campaign said the pro-Trump trucks tried to run the bus off the road as it traveled from San Antonio to Austin.

“You see the way our people, they — you know they were protecting his bus yesterday,” Trump said while addressing supporters in Michigan. “Because they’re nice. So his bus — they had hundreds of cars, Trump, Trump, Trump and the American flag. You see Trump and the American flag. Do you ever notice when you see the other side — I don’t even see much of the other side.”

This is just crazy talk. Can you imagine any other American President praising what at best is criminal mischief on his behalf?

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2020, Donald Trump
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Actually, it’s America that is unwell. The focus is on election night and the count, but Jason Miller gave the game away when he said on the weekend that Trump will win early and then have the election stolen over the next few weeks.

    Trump will burn everything down all around him but it’s Americans who will gather the tinder and the gasoline for the fire. We are in for a very bad time and our illusions about ourselves are not going to survive.

    “A republic – if you can keep it.” – Perhaps the last man who really understood Americans.

  2. And his praise means that he is responsible. He is failing at a fundamental requirement of leadership (indeed, of being a good person in general).

  3. drj says:

    This is just crazy talk.

    No, it isn’t.

    It is immoral and anti-democratic, but it isn’t crazy. In fact, the threat of violence by his supporters (in combination with a couple of corrupt judicial rulings) might conceivably keep him in power.

    Encouraging others so that they give you exactly what you want, is quite rational, actually.

  4. drj says:

    In other words, by calling this “crazy” you are refusing to see what is actually happening here. This is part of an attempt to steal the election and entrench minority rule.

    It’s quite deliberate.

  5. Scott F. says:

    Sure, Trump doubled down on his insane rhetoric. But, more importantly, the crowd at his rallies laughed and cheered his every word. The mouthpieces of his party backed him up. And all those decent Republicans, the ones we’ve been told will quite reasonably vote for him because of tribalism and a love of tax cuts and deregulation, they’ve picked up the line that Biden is not to be trusted to control the radicals of the left who have the temerity to confront systemic racism, climate change, and wealth inequality.

    Not the IT Dept. is right. The unwellness is broad and deep.

  6. Scott says:

    I pulled this over from the other thread:

    Let me tell you all something about this area. This is Comal County, north of San Antonio. The area from New Braunfels, west to Canyon Lake and Smithson Valley, was, in the 90s, a hotbed of KKK and Republic of Texas secessionists. Apparently, like locusts, they came out to annoy the heck out of people.

    The area has changed a lot in 20 years. Where there used to be a lot of pockets of rural poverty, now has become much wealthier. Most of the money is, of course, flowing out from San Antonio.
    The poverty is still there but more hidden. There is a lot of resentment of that wealth. Especially in the schools. The resenters go for Trump. However, the wealthy exurbanites also support Trump. Go figure.

  7. CSK says:

    Of course Trump praises these idiots. He was the one who told his devotees to beat up anyone at a rally who looked as if he or she might be inclined to throw a tomato. He was the one who bragged about grabbing women by the pussy.

    What would you expect?

  8. KM says:

    Its been reported that some of the people who attacked the bus were under the impression Harris was on the bus. In other words, they deliberately attacked a VP candidate. There’s a word for that and it ain’t “crazy”.

    This was plain ole’ terrorism and if she had been on the bus and hurt, a freaking assassination attempt. That Trump has publically approved of. It’s only be the grace of God and the idiocy of MAGAts that they picked a bus that didn’t have either of their targets aboard but this could have gone much, MUCH worse. This is what the next few weeks are going to look like – morons in thrall to their Orange Lord causing harm and attacking innocent people for the evulz. We’ve already seen an ambulance that had to be diverted because of Trump Train traffic blockages. That’s not “crazy”, @James. That’s fascism and their insane death cult coming for us all.

  9. KM says:


    Damn missing edit function.

    A final thought: if it had been a bus that a candidate had been on and SS reacted to protect their charge, I wonder how FOX would have reported on it. “Patriots murdered by Deep State in minor traffic scuffle”? “Evil Harris has innocent Texans killed by goons over scratch on bus”? What would Trump have tweeted? Somehow, I doubt it would have been condemnation of his followers but rather glorifying their martyrdom. We already know West has invoked dead MAGAts as a excuse of this behavior so it’s not surprise Trump’s doubled down on the approval. Fascists love their dead “heroes” – more fodder for the death cult.

  10. Joe says:

    Judging from this and the Trump Train traffic blockage in NJ yesterday and some of the reports out of the west coast, I suspect we will see a lot more Trump Train incidents this week, especially if the counting drags out.

  11. al Ameda says:

    Well, it was very heartening to see so many Republicans denounce this Brown Shirt stunt: I m sure Susan Collins was very concerned, yeah, right.

    Yet another hostile reminder that about 45% of the voters want to smash and own the Democrats, and will do anything to beat them down.

  12. Mister Bluster says:

    It’s only be the grace of God

    I refuse to invoke supernatural involvement in this event. Or any other aspect of life for that matter.
    Looks to me like Grace Godiva was amusing herself by watching the vehicles play tag at freeway speeds.

  13. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Not the IT Dept.:

    Actually, it’s America that is unwell.

    This! This x 1000!

  14. MarkedMan says:


    That’s fascism

    I agree with the sentiment, but I think bringing “facism” into the conversation dilutes the urgency. Facism is not something readily apparent to the average American. Plus, it’s complicated. Is Trump a fascist? Well, he’s a dictator wannabe but has no purpose beyond his own power. Miller and Barr are undoubtedly fascists, but what about McConnell? Isn’t he just another completely corrupt politician?

    We have another phrase that encompasses all of this: “Klan Governance” Up to now this type of governance has only applied to states (think McConnell’s home state of Kentucky, or Lindsey Graham’s South Carolina), but now the Republican Party as a whole have embraced the methods and goals of the Klan. (Which, however much it impacts my dark skinned c0-citizens, is only concerned with race as a means to an end.)

    What defines a state that has Klan Governance? Power held by a relative few, often as “prominent families” or “business leaders”, mostly behind the scenes. They have no larger goals for the people of their state and in fact are usually reflexively against anything that might improve their lot, as the workers must be kept on edge and hungry or they might get ideas above their station.

    The techniques a Klan Government uses to maintain power? Designating one or more out groups and using their control of the media to blame that group for all ills, to constantly demean and dehumanize that other, and to divert all unhappiness by the masses into anger against them. They groom tribalistic leaders who will promote these necessary hatreds while not standing in the way of another technique of Klan Governance: co-opting courts and legislatures as hired hands intent on protecting the interests of the powerful in exchange for the tolerance of low dollar corruption and fancy titles. The powerful also co-opt police forces into private armies, used primarily to keep the working class and poor in their places. And one of the most important tools of the Klan Government is their encouragement of a Lynch mob mentality, using the co-opted officials to keep it firmly aimed at the designated others. Police offices leave jails unlocked, Judges sway juries, legislatures make it clear no action will be taken against the mobs.

    The Republican Party has become the Party of Klan Governance.

  15. Northerner says:


    I agree with the sentiment, but I think bringing “facism” into the conversation dilutes the urgency. Facism is not something readily apparent to the average American. Plus, it’s complicated. Is Trump a fascist? Well, he’s a dictator wannabe but has no purpose beyond his own power.

    I’ve always had the impression that Trump is more of a monarchist than a fascist or even a dictator — the divine right of kings and all the pomp that goes with them seems to fit his style.

  16. MarkedMan says:

    @Northerner: He certainly likes the pomp and circumstance, but I can’t picture him spending fifteen minutes with one of the Windsors engaged in duties of the monarchy. He’s a thug, and a stupid one at that. It’s why he admires Duterte and Baby Kim, one thug to another.

  17. Teve says:

    “I also want to thank Don Jr., Eric, Ivanka, Tiffany… No matter what happens tomorrow, I’m very proud of you all, but if I don’t win, I’ll never speak to them again.”


  18. james hunt says:

    @Not the IT Dept.: Look around it is the demon possessed Democrats that have looted and burned down peoples livelihood! The thing that is going to change when Trump get his second term is he is NOT going to wait to be asked for help, he is going to send the military and WIPE OUT THESE ANARCIST!!! The blood in the streets WILL be the LEFTS!!!Go Trump 16 more years with Don Jr., Laura, for 16 years TO KEEP AMERICA SAFE AND GREAT!!!!!!

  19. Teve says:

    @james hunt:

    peoples livelihood!

    The blood in the streets WILL be the LEFTS!!!

    Trumpers are always so bad at apostrophes.

  20. Jen says:

    @Teve: Agree on the apostrophes, and note a bonus of the effusive use of exclamation points. They are also unlikely to hyphenate compound adjectives (e.g., demon-possessed), and seem to love the caps-lock.


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