Rep. Pete King (R-NY) on Wednesday mocked college students protesting Donald Trump’s election as “morons” who need to buck up.
“These college students. I find it incredible,” King told Long Island radio host Jay Oliver in an interview flagged by Think Progress. “I dunno what would happen if a real war ever came. You think back to the greatest generation. And now you have these people, they’re having crying sessions, giving them comfort dogs, they’re giving them group therapy, they’re giving them consolation, because they’re so upset that Hillary Clinton lost the election.”
“C’mon, have some guts, have some nerve, get out there, we’re supposed to be a great country. Are these the morons we’re counting on to be leaders in the future?” he went on.
Some colleges have offered counseling and other therapeutic support to students who feel upset or unsafe in the wake of Trump’s victory. Iowa Rep. Bobby Kaufmann (R) said he planned to propose a piece of legislation called the “suck it up, buttercup” bill that would cut the budgets of state universities that spend money on any sort of post-election support for students.
Protests have sprung up in cities across the country in the week since Trump was elected president. Demonstrators of all ages say they feel compelled to express opposition to Trump’s position on climate change, abortion, immigration, and other core policy issues, as well as the recent rash of hate crimes the President-elect’s supporters have carried out in his name, many of them on college campuses.
While young people have been a driving force in the protests, leading walkouts at high schools in Berkeley, California and New York City, press coverage of the marches shows that many older Americans have also participated.
Other Trump loyalists have criticized the protesters as sore losers, including former New York City Rudy Giuliani, who claimed some of them were paid “professionals.”
Giuliani lamented that “goons and thugs” had taken over New York City and were “destroying property.” To date, the only reports of violence and property destruction came out of weekend protests in Portland, Oregon.
Listen to King’s comments below: