A federal judge in San Antonio is under fire after he said people who will not accept Donald Trump as their president need to go to another country.
“I can assure you that whether you voted for him or you did not vote for him, if you are a citizen of the United States, he is your president,” said Judge John Primomo. “He will be your president, and if you do not like that, you need to go to another country.”
Federal Magistrate Judge John Primomo handles civil and criminal cases in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas. He also leads citizenship ceremonies are part of his duties. He made the remarks at a ceremony to welcome new citizens into the country at the Institute of Texan Cultures in San Antonio Thursday. Primomo told KENS5 he was referring to protestors, including some in San Antonio, who hold signs saying Trump is not their president.
“He is my president; he is your president and anyone who says he is not, does not belong in this country," Primomo said.
During his comments, he also said people who don’t like President-elect Trump will have their chance to speak during upcoming elections. He also went after NFL players who take a knee during the national anthem in protest of treatment of African Americans in the U.S.
“I've seen these football players…it's come down from national football league players. It's coming down to younger people, who protest things they don't like in the United States, by either kneeling down or sitting down during the national anthem, and that...I detest that. You can protest things that happen in this country. You have every right to protest…but you don't do that by offending national symbols, like the national anthem and the flag of the United States.”
Primomo talked about the election for a little more than seven minutes.
“Now, I’ll get off my soap box,” he said while ending his remarks.
After the ceremony, we asked him why he felt the need to make those comments during the citizenship ceremony.
“It's been so acrimonious,” said Primomo. “It's time for people to try heal the wounds of the campaign and the election and try to get behind the government and heal things that are going on in this country.
KENS5: Aren't you making it worse by telling people they should leave the country if they don't like who was elected president?
PRIMOMO: “That's not what I said. What I said was if they will deny he is the president of the United States and will deny that he is their president then they should find another country.”
Primomo went on to say he’s not making a political endorsement, but an endorsement of our laws.
“I'm not speaking in terms of Mr. Trump or his policies,” said Primomo. “I did not vote for Donald Trump if that has anything to do with it, but he is going to be the President of the United States, and everyone needs to acknowledge that and needs to acknowledge that the American electoral process has made him the President of the United States.”
KENS5 tried to verify his voting record, but that information, which would normally be public record, is sealed as Primomo is a federal judge.