MAGA Governor Candidate’s ‘Some Folks Need Killing’ Rant Sparks Backlash

North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson is facing backlash for a clip circulating online of the MAGA Republican saying that “some folks need killing.”

In the video, which was taken from Robinson’s speech to Lake Church on June 30 in White Lake, North Carolina, the lieutenant governor speaks about the meaning of the upcoming July 4 holiday, and tells those in the audience that freedom is worth protecting “at all cost.” Robinson is running for North Carolina’s gubernatorial election this fall and has been endorsed by former President Donald Trump.

“Folks, you see, there’s a class of people in this nation that want you to forget that,” Robinson said during the roughly half-an-hour speech. “They want control. They don’t care about Democrats, they don’t care about Republicans, they don’t care about anything. They care about control.”

Robinson later on invoked comparisons to the United States military’s actions in World War II, saying that after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor in December 1941, “We didn’t quibble about it. We didn’t argue about it. We didn’t fight about it. We killed it.”

MAGA Governor Candidate's Rant Sparks Backlash
North Carolina Lieutenant Governor Mark Robinson speaks at the Faith and Freedom Road to Majority conference at the Washington Hilton on June 21, 2024, in Washington, D.C. Robinson is facing widespread backlash online after a…

Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

“Some liberal somewhere is gonna say that sounds awful. Too bad,” Robinson added. “Get mad at me if you want to. Some folks need killing. It’s time for somebody to say it. It’s not a matter of vengeance. It’s not a matter of being mean or spiteful. It’s a matter of necessity.”

When reached for comment on the video, Mike Lonergan, the communications director for Robinson’s gubernatorial campaign, told Newsweek that the lieutenant governor was “speaking about the enemies of the U.S. and the Allied Powers during World War II, the Nazis and the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy.”

Robinson’s comments circulated online after a report by the progressive news site The New Republic on Friday, and several individuals accused the Republican of appearing to call for “political violence,” including the X, formerly Twitter, account Republicans Against Trump. North Carolina Representative Wiley Nickel, a Democrat, also posted a clip of Robinson’s comments calling them “scary.”

“Mark Robinson used his religious platform on July 4 to call for violence,” Nickel wrote. “This isn’t leadership. This isn’t faith. This is unhinged.”

Justin Parmenter, an author who often posts criticisms of Trump, also flagged Robinson’s comments in a post to X Friday, writing, “This man is not cut out for leadership.”

“Mark Robinson called public school teachers ‘wicked people,'” posted the Democratic Party of North Carolina (NCDP), referring to a past comment by Robinson. “Now he’s saying wicked people ‘need killing’ as a ‘matter of necessity.'”

“Anyone who talks about teachers the same way he talks about terrorists is too dangerous to be North Carolina’s next governor,” the NCDP added.

Robinson has faced backlash in the past for his public statements, including after referring to the LGBTQ community as “filth” and releasing a report in 2021 that claimed public school teachers in the state of North Carolina were “abusing” their positions to indoctrinate students.

Robinson’s campaign responded to the backlash Friday saying that it was “lies.”

“Absolute gutter lies from the shameless hacks of [President Joe Biden] campaign & [NCDP] they’re defending the Axis powers when Mark Robinson was applauding the brave Americans that fought in and won WWII,” Lonergan posted to X on Friday.

Update 07/5/24, 6:10 p.m. ET: This story has been updated with additional comment from Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson’s campaign.