At a dinner for evangelical Christian preachers on Monday night at the White House, Trump urged religious leaders to use the power of their pulpits to make sure that “all of your people vote” in November, according to an audio recording of the meeting obtained by the New York Times.
“You’re one election away from losing everything you’ve got,” Trump reportedly told them.
“They will overturn everything that we’ve done and they’ll do it quickly and violently. And violently. There’s violence. When you look at antifa, and you look at some of these groups, these are violent people,” Trump said at the meeting, Presstv reported.
Antifa - short for anti-fascist - refers to groups of far-left protesters who fight far-right ideology and regularly clash with far-right demonstrators.
Over the past two years, emboldened white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups have staged public rallies across the United States, while anti-fascist protesters have shown up to protest against them.
The Times reported that these additional remarks did not make clear if Trump was talking about congressional Democrats or their left-wing supporters in the country.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump said his supporters would probably react violently if he did not win the Republican nomination.
During the violent neo-Nazi rallies in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year, white supremacists attacked black residents and local Christian ministers, and clashed with anti-fascist protesters in the streets.
Afterwards, Trump repeatedly condemned “both sides” for the violence.