Three days after Republican frontrunner Donald Trump left California – and protests that surrounded his appearances here – Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday called the Republican presidential frontrunner’s success in the GOP primary a “strange” phenomenon, accusing Trump of exploiting voters’ anxieties and fears.
“I think people are upset. Wherever you look, there’s a lot of climate of discontent,” the Democratic governor told reporters at a wildfire awareness event. “The world is changing, the demographics, the immigration, the values. It’s a turbulent period, and everybody says they want change and innovation, but when it comes at the pace that it’s coming, it causes anxiety and even fear. And there will be people who will use that for their campaign fodder and for their own objectives.”
Brown, a fourth-term Democrat who ran unsuccessfully for president three times, called Trump a “phenomenon worth examining, putting under the microscope and saying, ‘What is going on here?’”
He added, “Something strange.”
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Trump was met with protests in Orange County on Thursday and in Burlingame the following day. Brown said protesters should be “respectful” but that demonstrations “come with the territory.”
He said, “I don’t think it really slows him down.”