Trump backs Mark Robinson in high-stakes North Carolina governor race: ‘Martin Luther King on steroids’

Former President Donald Trump endorsed Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson ahead of Super Tuesday, comparing the controversial Republican to Martin Luther King Jr. during a rally in North Carolina.

Trump pledged to back the lieutenant governor, who has come under fire for his rhetoric and remains a highly polarizing figure, months ago.

North Carolina Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson speaks before Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump at a campaign rally Saturday, March 2, 2024, in Greensboro, North Carolina. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

“This is Martin Luther King on steroids,” Trump said at a rally over the weekend. “I told that to Mark. I said, ‘I think you’re better than Martin Luther King. I think you are Martin Luther King times two.’”

According to ABC News, Trump said Robinson wasn’t sure how to take the comparison to Martin Luther King Jr.

“You should like it,” Trump said.

Robinson said he was “humbled” to receive the endorsement from the former president and looked forward to working with Trump to bring the GOP victory this fall. Robinson is expected to be the Republican nominee ahead of the state’s primary Tuesday, despite some worry in the Tar Heel State about his electability statewide due to past comments. 

“He is history’s latest example of someone trying to rise to power through hate,” Dale Folwell, the state’s Republican treasurer and one of Robinson’s primary opponents, said.

Robinson’s recent rise in politics has been filled with offensive actions, including using antisemitic tropes, making anti-LGBT remarks, and taking particular aim at prominent Democratic women, such as Hillary Clinton and Michelle Obama.


State Attorney General Josh Stein is expected to be the Democratic nominee for governor in November. Morgan Jackson, chief strategist for Stein, said Robinson “will be the most extreme candidate that is nominated for governor by either party in the last 50 years in North Carolina,” according to a Washington Post report chronicling Robinson’s past behavior.

“It’s sad but not surprising that there’s no low the Democrats and their allies in the media won’t stoop to smear Mark Robinson,” Robinson campaign spokesman Mike Lonergan said in a statement.

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