Donald Trump is trying to set up a meeting with Jacob Blake’s family during his visit to Kenosha, Wisconsin on Tuesday after the shooting victim’s father said the president should have called earlier this week and mother says she missed his call.
The president’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump revealed to Fox News Sunday’s Chris Wallace that Trump has reached out to Blake’s family and wants to meet with them this week.
‘He’s reached to the Blake family. I don’t know if they were able to connect yet. And I don’t know for sure if that’s on the agenda,’ Trump said during her interview Sunday morning. ‘I’m sure, given the opportunity, he’ll be more than happy to do that. But I haven’t gotten that information just yet.’
The White House announced Saturday that Trump will visit Kenosha on Tuesday following days of protests in the city after another police shooting of a black man.
Trump is already scheduled to meet with ‘law enforcement and survey damage from recent riots’, White House spokesman Judd Deere told reporters aboard Air Force One Saturday.
He did not say at the time if the president will meet the family of Blake, who was left paralyzed from the waist down after he was shot multiple times in the back by police officers.
Blake’s mother told CNN Thursday that they did not support the violent riots that have overtaken Kenosha, and other parts of the country, since their son was shot following a tussle with police.
Lara Trump, President Donald Trump’s daughter-in-law and adviser, said Sunday that the president has reached out to Jacob Blake’s family to set up a meeting as he visits Kenosha, Wisconsin on Tuesday
‘To use my child or any other mother or fathers’ child – our tragedy – to react in that manner is just not acceptable and it’s not helping Jacob,’ Blake’s mother, Julia Jackson, said.
‘For President Trump, I’m sorry I missed your call,’ she continued in her interview with Don Lemon on Thursday. ‘I’m not mad at you, at all. I have the utmost respect for you as the leader of our country. Like I said before, and I’m not saying this to him directly, we should always get the details from the right source before we start throwing bricks.’
Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is also set to travel to an undisclosed location on Monday to ‘condemn violence, and to note that chaos has unfolded’ on Trump’s watch, the New York Times reported.
While details of Biden’s travel plans are not yet known, some have speculated that he could be headed to Kenosha as well.
Blake’s father, who is also named Jacob Blake, had a different opinion than the victim’s mother, suggested it was too late for Trump to asked for a meeting with him after this son was shot seven times in the back by a white police officer and has been left paralyzed from the waist down – it is still unclear if the paralysis is permanent.
Following an hourlong conversation earlier this week with Biden and running mate Kamala Harris, Blake Sr. said it was like ‘speaking to my uncle and one of my sisters.’
‘They were so comforting that you almost forgot how the situation was really playing out,’ Blake Sr. told CNN Friday. ‘It was like I was speaking to my uncle and one of my sisters – literally, literally.’
When asked by CNN in a separate interview Friday if he wanted to hear from Trump, Blake Sr. said, ‘It is too late. He should have called four days ago.’
When asked if Trump had tried to reach out, Blake had replied: ‘That’s a negative.’
The visit is certain to exacerbate tensions in the city, where a crowd of about 1,000 demonstrators gathered outside a courthouse Saturday to denounce police violence.
Lara Trump, who is married to the president’s son Eric, said that the riots have likely changed some voters’ minds.
She was responding to Kellyanne Conway’s remarks that ‘the more chaos and anarchy and vandalism and violence reigns, the better it is’ for her father-in-law getting reelected.
‘It certainly paints a very clear picture,’ she said.
Trump has been running his reelection campaign on a law-and-order mantle, denouncing protesters as ‘thugs’ while voicing his support for police.
He has also repeatedly offered to send in the National Guard or federal assistance to quell the unrest.
Blake, 29, took at least half a dozen shots in the back in front of his small children as he tried to get into his car last Sunday, in an incident that triggered an outpouring of anger over yet another shooting of a black man by white police.
During the rally against police brutality and racism on Saturday, his father, Jacob Blake Sr, called on protesters to refrain from looting and vandalism, which had overshadowed peaceful protests before a tense calm set in the past three nights.
‘Good people of this city understand. If we tear it up we have nothing,’ he told a gathering at a park that was the hub of protests in support of his son, Jacob Blake Jr.
‘Stop it. Show ’em for one night we don’t have to tear up nothing.’
The shooting of Blake has turned the mostly white city of 100,000 people south of Milwaukee into the latest flashpoint in a summer of nationwide demonstrations against police brutality and racism.
Protesters march with the family of Jacob Blake during a rally against racism and police brutality in Kenosha on Saturday.
Blake, who is a father of six, has been left paralyzed after cops shot him multiple times in the back as he entered his car last Sunday
Blake will likely participate via video from his hospital room in a court hearing next week about criminal charges that predated the shooting, his lawyer told Reuters on Saturday, adding he would plead not guilty.
Anger at Blake’s shooting, captured on video that went viral, led to street skirmishes; protesters hurled firecrackers and bricks at police in riot gear who fired volleys of tear gas and rubber bullets.