Published 9:15 AM EDT Oct 14, 2019
Journalists are calling on President Donald Trump and his campaign to denounce a video edited to depict Trump violently murdering news organizations and political opponents.
The video was played at a conference hosted by a pro-Trump group at his Miami resort last week, according to a report in The New York Times. It includes the logo for Trump's 2020 re-election campaign.
In the video, which is an edited scene from the film "Kingsman: The Secret Service," Trump enters a "Church of Fake News" and opens fire on members of the congregation, who have various news organizations' logos or the faces of Democratic lawmakers and other critics superimposed onto their bodies.
Trump proceeds to shoot, stab and set fire to the late Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., 2020 presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and former President Barack Obama.
The video also shows House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., who is currently involved in pursuing the impeachment inquiry into Trump.
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Several news outlets are depicted being killed in the rampage, including Politico, NPR, HuffPost, The Washington Post, Slate and CNN.
The White House Correspondents' Association and CNN called on Trump to denounce the video.
"We have previously told the President his rhetoric would incite violence. Now we call on him and everybody associated with this conference to denounce this video and affirm that violence has no place in our society," Jonathan Karl, the president of WHCA, said in a statement.
"The President and his family, the White House, and the Trump campaign need to denounce it immediately in the strongest possible terms. Anything less equates to a tacit endorsement of violence and should not be tolerated by anyone," a CNN statement reads.
Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke said Sunday evening, "Last year, a Trump supporter sent bombs to CNN—and a shooter entered a church yesterday. This video isn’t funny. It will get people killed.
An organizer for the conference confirmed that the video was shown but denounced its showing as part of a "meme exhibit" with content submitted by third parties, according to The New York Times. "This matter is under review," said the organizer Alex Phillips.
Phillips also said on the conference's website it was "shocking" that the Times did not report on other portions of the conference, "Including our panel conversation LITERALLY condemning political violence while claiming to be upset over a meme that was not sanctioned, shown on stage, or approved."
Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders and Donald Trump Jr. were reportedly scheduled to speak at the same three-day conference where the video was played. According to The Times, representatives for the two said they did not see the video.
A spokesperson for the Trump campaign told The New York Times that the campaign was not involved in the creation of the video, and "we do not condone violence." White House Press Secretary said on Twitter Monday morning that Trump has not yet seen the video, but based on reports condemns its contents. She said Trump will see it shortly.
Trump has repeatedly referred to members of the American press as the "enemy of the people," and attacked members of the press at his campaign rallies.