Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) says she is appalled by protesters responding destructively to President Trump’s inauguration Friday.
“Nothing is more un-American than protesters who are not peaceful – disgusting,” tweeted McCaskill, who backed 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton over Trump.
“I understand the angst out there today for all of you throwing stuff at me,” she added. “Sorry, but I believe peaceful protest is always the right way.”
McCaskill also said violent protests run counter to the teachings of civil rights leaders, adding they discredit peaceful demonstrations as well.
“MLK and John Lewis were and are the role models for peaceful protest,” she wrote, referencing Martin Luther King Jr. and the present-day Democratic representative from Georgia, respectively. “But the small group will get all the attention – sigh.”
Trump took the oath of office Friday, making him America’s 45th president after an often bitter White House race last year.
“We are transferring power from Washington, D.C. and giving it back to you, the people,” he said on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. “From this moment on, it’s going to be America first. I will fight for you with every breath in my body, and I will never, ever let you down.”
Police in Washington, D.C., however, announced that afternoon they had arrested “numerous” people destructively protesting against Trump mere blocks from his address.
Authorities told The Associated Press that those arrested were charged with rioting following incidents involving a group of about 100 people.
The demonstrators damaged vehicles, destroyed property and set small fires while armed with crowbars and hammers, officials added.
The unrest in D.C. was not the only tension nationwide, with spirited anti-Trump protests also erupting in cities ranging from New York City to San Francisco.
McCaskill is facing reelection in Missouri next year, a state which Trump won by about 19 points over Clinton during the 2016 presidential election