Republican Florida Sen. Jeff Brandes: “we should apologize” for Trump’s call for Congress members to “go back” to where they came from

Florida State Sen. Jeff Brandes (R-Pinellas)

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On Friday a member of the Tampa Tiger Bay Club confronted Republican State Senator Jeff Brandes in order to get his response to the chant and to Trump’s tweet saying four members of Congress should “go back” to where they came from.

“So, here’s what I’ll say. I think that at the end of the day, I don’t follow what’s going on in D.C. like I follow what’s going on here in this community. I’m not watching what all that stuff is.

“Here’s what I want to make sure. You’re an American citizen. We should treat you with all the respect that any American citizen deserves. We should apologize to any American citizen that gets offended because we have somebody who calls them out and pretends that they’re less than an American citizen.

“It doesn’t matter how you got here, whether you were born here, whether you immigrated here, whether you apply for amnesty and asylum and were granted American citizen. None of that matters. What matters is that you’re here.

“We are a nation of immigrants. My family immigrated from the Islands in the 1940s. Came here, established a small business, and grew it up. They’ve lived the American dream. Every immigrant should have the opportunity to live the American dream. And, every support, every president should support citizens of this great country.”


Brandes was on a panel talking about criminal justice reform. We’ll hear that Monday on WMNF’s MidPoint at noon on 88.5 FM.

On Thursday President Donald Trump chided his supporters who chanted “send her back” when he questioned the loyalty of a Somali-born member of Congress. It’s part of widespread criticism of the campaign crowd’s cry after Republicans warned about political blowback from the angry scene. But the crowd’s “send her back” shouts resounded for 13 seconds as Trump made no attempt to interrupt them. He paused in his speech and surveyed the scene, taking in the uproar.

On Friday, however, Trump appeared less concerned about the matter, tweeting that it was “amazing how the Fake News Media became ‘crazed’ over the chant ‘send her back’ by a packed Arena.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.