Mikhail Baryshnikov: Donald Trump's Rhetoric "Reminds Me of the Soviet Union of My Youth"
"Hundreds of thousands of people like me have fled from countries led by dangerous totalitarian opportunists like Donald Trump."
Mikhail Baryshnikov has never publicly endorsed a political candidate before, until now.
The Russian-American dancer, choreographer and actor — he played Carrie Bradshaw's (Sarah Jessica Parker) sixth-season love interest Aleksandr Petrovsky in Sex and the City — endorses Hillary Clinton and strongly denounces Donald Trump in a video for the Humanity for Hillary social media campaign.
"Forty two years ago I left a country that built walls to come to a place without them," says Baryshnikov in the new video, called #ITrustHer. "But today, as a citizen of the United States, for the first time, I’m hearing rhetoric that reminds me of the Soviet Union of my youth, where it was a crime, and continues to be, a crime to be different."
Baryshnikov says the America he loves welcomes people "of all nations, all religions and supports all forms of human expression." He said his life has been made possible by America welcoming him as an immigrant, and says he trusts Hillary Clinton with America's future.
"Hundreds of thousands of people like me have fled from countries led by dangerous totalitarian opportunists like Donald Trump," says Baryshnikov. "Don’t let that happen to our beautiful United States of America."
Baryshnikov released a statement alongside the video, saying, “While watching the presidential election unfold, and hearing Donald Trump’s flirtations with the Kremlin, I feel compelled to add my voice to the mix — specifically regarding immigration — something I am obviously familiar with. I have never publicly endorsed a political candidate before, or inserted myself into politics in any way other than by voting, but this video is a direct call to action: We must elect Hillary Clinton as president in November.”
Humanity for Hillary co-founder Laura Dawn said her organization was honored to work with Baryshnikov, whom she calls "Russia's most celebrated artist-in-exile." She said, “Donald Trump’s supporters should know that Putin’s Russia is a country where artists, activists, journalists, and LGBTQ people have been beaten, arrested and killed. Yet Donald Trump speaks glowingly of Putin and, as we just learned, Trump’s campaign chair Paul Manafort has troubling pro-Russian ties.”
Dawn is referring to Manafort's work as an international consultant. The New York Times reported that $12.7 million dollars in cash was earmarked for Manafort by the pro-Russia political party of Viktor Yanukovych, the former president of Ukraine, in 2007 to 2012. Manafort denies receiving such payments and called the report silly."
The Humanity for Hillary campaign recently released a video entitled #ThisIsWhatMyRevolutionLooksLike starring Lena Dunham, Uzo Aduba, Rosie Perez and more.