Robert De Niro has not let up on his criticism of Donald Trump, blasting the president-elect as “a bad example of this country” during a rally outside Trump Tower in New York City on Thursday night.
“I’m very happy to be here tonight with all of you and all of my overrated friends,” De Niro said at the start of his remarks, a reference to Trump calling Meryl Streep “overrated” in a tweet sent after Streep’s scathing Golden Globes speech earlier this month.
The Thursday event, dubbed We Stand United, was scheduled to feature appearances from De Niro, Rosie Perez, Michael Moore, Sally Field, Mark Ruffalo, Alec Baldwin, Rev. Al Sharpton, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and many others.
“Just like our Founding Fathers, you can love our country and not love everything about it,” De Niro said in his speech. “That’s understandable. You can love your city, as I do, and not love everything about it either. That may have been what I was thinking about when I said I wish you-know-who would leave this city. I don’t care where he goes, I just never thought he’d go to Washington. He’s a bad example of this country, this city.”
De Niro criticized Trump for his anti-immigrant rhetoric, noting “these huddled masses yearning to breathe free built our country and our lifeblood of our strong, diverse, beautiful New York City. They gave us the strength to prosper in the mid-70s when the government sent us the message to drop dead. They gave us the strength to recover after the tragedy of 9/11. Now they’re giving us the strength to persevere in the face of the promises of the incoming government.”
He added, “We’re all rooting for the new administration, of course, to abandon the divisive, racist, misogynist, ignorant plans it’s trumpeting and lead us with intelligence and compassion. Whatever happens, we Americans, we New Yorkers, we patriots, will stand united for our rights and the rights of our fellow citizens.”
De Niro has been a sharp critic of Trump for years and took issue with the former reality television host time and again during the presidential campaign in 2016. Back in August, he described Trump as “totally nuts” and unfit to lead America; in October, De Niro said he’d “like to punch in the face.”
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