CNN’s Don Lemon is ready for the riots in America to stop.
Not because people have been killed. Not because people have been seriously injured. Not because livelihoods have been ruined as entire blocks of cities are burned to the ground.
The riots must stop, Lemon said Tuesday night, because they’re starting to hurt Democrats in the polls.
With fewer than three months until Election Day, Lemon is concerned that Joe Biden’s chances of defeating President Donald Trump will decrease if Biden doesn’t publicly call for an end to rioting, blame it all on Trump, and promise to address police reform if he gets elected.
During a segment with Chris Cuomo, the two hosts discussed an NPR/PBS News Hour/Marist poll that showed only 53% of people view the protests as “mostly legitimate,” down from 62% of people who viewed them that way in June.
Only 28% of people thought the demonstrations were “people acting unlawfully” in June. In August, that number rose to 38%. Cuomo made the point that to much of the public, the riots are indistinguishable from those who may be attempting to peacefully protest.
“What’s happening in Kenosha is a Rorschach test for the entire country,” Lemon said. “And I think this is a blind spot for Democrats. I think Democrats are ignoring this problem or hoping that it will go away. And it’s not going to go away. And so, unless someone comes up with a solution over the next 73 days, or 70-so, however many days are left. 68 days. The problem is not going to be fixed by then, but what they can do, and I think maybe Joe Biden may be afraid to do it … he’s got to address it. He’s got to come out and talk about it.
“He’s got to do a speech like Barack Obama did about race,” Lemon continued. “He’s got to come out and tell people that he is going to deal with the issue of police reform in this country and that what’s happening now is happening on Donald Trump’s watch, and when he is the president and Kamala Harris is the vice president, then they will take care of this problem. But guess what: The rioting has to stop. Chris, as you know and I know, it’s showing up in the polling. It’s showing up in focus groups. It is the only thing right now that is sticking.”
Since George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis in late May, violent and destructive riots have occurred in cities all over the country. Most recently, Kenosha, Wisconsin, has seen several nights of riots, resulting in multiple shootings and deaths and numerous buildings burned down in response to the police shooting of Jacob Blake.