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Donald Trump feared being killed by ‘dangerous’ fruit.
The former US president confirmed in a deposition that he ‘jokingly’ asked people to intervene if they saw protesters at a 2015 campaign rally preparing to pelt him with tomatoes or other edible objects because he was afraid of being seriously injured or worse. if any of them had made contact.
A transcript of the deposition – part of a legal action brought by a group of protesters who alleged they were assaulted at the rally by the former ‘Apprentice’ star’s security guards – was recently released.
Protesters’ attorney Benjamin Dictor asked Trump: “Okay. And you said, ‘If you see somebody about to throw a tomato, just punch them. Was that your statement?
The ex-Commander-in-Chief replied: “Oh, yes. It was very dangerous. We were threatened.
“They were going to throw fruit. We were threatened. We had a threat.”
When asked how he knew about the fruit threat, Trump replied: “We were told. I thought the Secret Service was involved in this, actually. And you get hit with fruit, it’s – no – it’s a very violent thing. We were on high alert for that.”
His own attorney, Jeffrey Goldman, chimed in: “A tomato is a fruit after all, I suppose. … She has glitches.
Trump continued: “It’s worse than a tomato, it’s also something else. But the tomato, when they start doing this stuff, it’s very dangerous. There was an alert that day- the.”
The protesters’ lawyer then asked the 75-year-old business tycoon whom he had asked to ‘kick the ass off’ anyone trying to throw fruit.
He replied, “It was for the public. It was said in jest. Maybe buy, you know, some truth. It’s very dangerous stuff. You can get yourself killed with these things. . .. I wanted to have people ready because we were put on alert that they were going to make fruit. And some fruit is much worse than – tomatoes are bad by the way. But it’s very dangerous.. . they were going to hit – they were going to hit real hard.”
During an anti-war demonstration in 1970, then-President Richard Nixon was hit with “eggs, tomatoes and vegetables”, during a 2012 visit to Egypt, Hillary Clinton, who was Secretary of State, had tomatoes thrown at his motorcade.
And in 2009, two tomatoes were thrown at former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin at the Mall of America in Minnesota.
None of them were injured.