New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is blaming the Republican Party and President Donald Trump for Friday night’s violence in Manhattan outside a GOP headquarters.
A fight occurred between members of the far-right group the Proud Boys and protesters.
In a conference call Sunday morning, the Democratic governor said Republican leaders invited the group that describes itself as “Western chauvinists” to divide the public ahead the midterm elections and equated it to rhetoric used by President Trump.
“So the president is on the stump today saying ‘the Democrats are a mob, the Democrats will bring chaos, they are leftists,’ and then coincidentally, the Republican Party in the State of New York invites a group known for violence and for hate speech. And by the way, I don’t believe in coincidences in politics. Not on the same weekend, not in New York. Not in a Republican Party that is very close to Trump,” said Cuomo.
Videos of the fight have surfaced online showing individuals shouting homophobic slurs outside the event where Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes was invited to speak.
Cuomo has asked the New York State Police and the FBI to assist the NYPD in its investigation of the incident. Police are investigating vandalism outside the Metropolitan Republican Club that appeared Thursday night. Anarchist symbols were spray-painted on the building and several windows were broken. A note was reportedly left saying the attack “is merely a beginning.”
On Friday afternoon, New York GOP Chairman Ed Cox said the vandalism “has no place in our society” and urged Democratic officials to condemn the incident.