Illinois state senator apologizes for mock assassination of Trump at fundraiser

State Sen. Martin Sandoval. Photo credit:

SPRINGFIELD, Ill.  — A Democratic state senator is apologizing for a mock assassination of Republican President Donald Trump staged at a weekend fundraiser.

WCIA-TV in Champaign reports that the incident occurred Friday night at Chicago Sen. Martin Sandoval’s golf outing in the Chicago suburb of Winfield. A man carrying what looks like a fake assault-style rifle points it at someone wearing a Trump mask. A woman who attended posted the photos to social media.


Democratic Gov. J.B. Pritzker said “purposely pointing a fake gun at anyone is insensitive and wrong,” particularly after recent shootings in Texas and Ohio.

Tim Schneider is chairman of the Illinois Republican Party. He says Sandoval’s apology is “too little, too late.” He also said it was staged event.

“We are looking to find out who [is in the photo], and if it’s somebody on his staff they need to resign” Schneider said.

Sandoval did not answer questions on camera but issued a statement:

“I had absolutely no knowledge that this regrettable exchange between one of my 1,200 guests and a third-party vendor even took place.

Those individuals involved exhibited extremely poor judgement.

This vendor was hired to provide music and entertainment. This offensive use of a beverage dispenser was in no way part of any scheduled program.

I had no knowledge of it and neither did my staff.”

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