Robert De Niro wrote a lengthy statement denouncing former President Donald Trump for ex-Trump official Miles Taylor to read at The New Republic’s “Stop Trump Summit” on Wednesday.
The actor didn’t even attend the event, as he is currently recovering from COVID-19, but he had a lot to say via Taylor at the New York City gathering.
“We New Yorkers got to know him over the years that he poisoned the atmosphere and littered our city with monuments to his ego. We knew firsthand that this was someone who should never be considered for leadership” De Niro wrote. “We tried to warn the world in 2016.”
“I’ve spent a lot of time studying bad men. I’ve examined their characteristics, their mannerisms, the utter banality of their cruelty,” De Niro also wrote. “Yet there’s something different about Donald Trump. When I look at him, I don’t see a bad man. Truly. I see an evil one.”
De Niro, who will appear in Martin Scorsese’s upcoming film “Killers of the Flower Moon,” backed up his analysis of Trump from past roles he has played in his extensive career, such as the gangsters he has met over the years. Trump to De Niro is a “wannabe gangster” who “can’t quite pull it off.”
“He’s a wannabe tough guy with no morals or ethics. No sense of right or wrong,” De Niro continued. “No regard for anyone but himself — not the people he was supposed to lead and protect.”
The Oscar winner, who has long been a staunch critic of the former president, predicted the death of democracy if Trump takes back the White House in 2024.
“Democracy won’t survive the return of a wannabe dictator,” he wrote. “And it won’t overcome evil if we are divided.”
His proposed solution lies in bridging the gap and reaching out to Trump supporters.
“They’re not stupid, and we must not condemn them for making a stupid choice,” De Niro said. “Our future doesn’t just depend on us. It depends on them.”
Watch video of Taylor reading De Niro’s remarks at the top of this post.