Obama scolds crowd for heckling pro-Trump protester

Michael Walsh
Reporter

President Obama wasn’t too impressed when a crowd of Hillary Clinton supporters started to boo a pro-Donald Trump protester at their rally.

“Hey! Listen up! I told you to be focused, and you’re not focused right now!” Obama chided the rowdy audience in Fayetteville, N.C. “Listen to what I’m saying. Hold up. Hold up! Hold up! Hold up! Everybody sit down, and be quiet for a second.”

The commander in chief could not immediately quiet the crowd amid the apparent clash between the liberal audience and the demonstrator backing the Republican presidential candidate. But as the hubbub subsided, Obama called on the Democrats to exercise civility when confronted with people who hold different political points of view.

“You’ve got an older gentleman who is supporting his candidate. He’s not doing nothing. You don’t have to worry about him. This is what I mean about folks not being focused,” Obama said.

A Donald Trump supporter interrupts President Obama’s speech at Fayetteville State University, Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (Photo: Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP)

The quarrel in the crowd continued despite the president’s entreaties for cooler heads to prevail.

“First of all, we live in a country that respects free speech. Second of all, it looks like maybe he might’ve served in our military and we got to respect that. Third of all, he was elderly and we got to respect our elders. And fourth of all, don’t boo, vote.”

Many people in the audience shouted out “vote” before Obama finished the sentence.

“Don’t boo, vote” has become a common refrain for Obama around major campaigns. He gave that message during an impassioned speech at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia last July and at the University of Colorado in Boulder in September 2012 when he was running for reelection against Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

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