Authorities in Florida said on Saturday that a man deliberately rammed a vehicle into a tent of Republican volunteers who were registering people to vote.
“Jacksonville police say a driver intentionally crashed a van through a tent where Duval County GOP volunteers were registering voters Saturday afternoon,” The Florida Times-Union reported. “Several Duval County GOP volunteers were working at the registration tent when a white man in his early 20s driving an older – possibly 1980s – brown van pulled up toward the tent.”
Lt. Larry Gayle of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office told reporters that law enforcement was looking at the incident “as in reference to interruption of the political process.”
“We are investigating this as an aggravated assault,” Gayle said. “Several people were in the area and could have been seriously hurt. … JSO is taking the situation very seriously.”
Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel responded to the alleged attack by writing on Twitter: “These unprovoked, senseless attacks on @realDonaldTrump’s supporters need to end. I want to echo the @DuvalGOP in saying: We will not be silenced by cowards, and these disgusting acts will only make us work harder to win November.”
President Donald Trump quickly responded, writing, “Law Enforcement has been notified. Be careful tough guys who you play with!”
The Florida Times-Union added that Gayle said that after the driver rammed the vehicle that he got out and flipped off the victims before running away.
“We are outraged by this senseless act of violence toward our great volunteers,” Duval GOP Chairman Dean Black said. “The Republican Party of Duval County will not be intimidated by these cowards and we will not be silenced. I call on every Republican in our great city to stand up, get involved and show these radicals that we will not be intimidated from exercising our Constitutional rights.”
In a series of tweets, the Duval County GOP documented the incident, writing, “Today in Jacksonville, Florida six Trump Campaign volunteers were intentionally targeted while registering voters.”
“At approximately 2:45 p.m. a multi-colored brown and gold van driven by what is described as a white male in his 20s or 30s, accelerated into a crowd of volunteers at the Kernan Village shopping center located at 11900 Atlantic Boulevard,” Duval County GOP continued. “Thankfully, Republican volunteers narrowly avoided being struck by the accelerating van. The driver sped away after making an obscene gesture toward the crowd.”
Duval County GOP, concluded, “The Republican Party of Duval County plans to redouble its efforts to register voters and will continue it’s fight with renewed intensity to re-elect President Donald Trump.”