Prior to the election, Robert De Niro had warned his fans he might leave the U.S. if President-elect Donald Trump won the election. Now that Trump has won, in a bid to accommodate the actor, a mayor of a town in Italy has offered to grant him asylum.
On Nov. 13, the mayor of Ferrazzano, a town in the Italian region of Molise, said his community would be "ready to welcome [De Niro] with open arms" if the 73-year-old were serious about leaving the United States, The Independent reports.
The American actor's great-grandparents originally emigrated from Ferrazzano in 1890.
"If, after the disappointment of Trump’s election, he wants to take refuge here, we would be honored to welcome him," Ferrazzano Mayor Antonio Cerio stated, The Smoke Room reports.
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“To welcome someone like De Niro would be an amazing promotion for us on the international stage,” local resident Paolo Frattura said. “This is the right place in which to forget the electoral defeat [of Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton] and avoid having to beat up Trump.”
De Niro originally made the statement about abandoning the United States during an appearance on the Jimmy Kimmel talk show.
On the show, he talked about how angry he was over the election's results and reneged a previous statement in a pre-election video about punching Trump in the face.
"I can’t do that now — he’s the president," De Niro said. "And I have to respect that position, though we all know what he … anyway. We have to see what he’s gonna do, and how he’s really gonna follow through on certain things."
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In the video that came out before the election, De Niro criticizes Trump repeatedly.
"He’s an idiot," he said. "He’s an embarrassment to this country. It makes me so angry that this country has gotten to this point that this fool, this bozo, has wound up where he has. He talks how he wants to punch people in the face? Well, I’d like to punch him in the face. This is somebody that we want for president? I don’t think so.
"What I care about is the direction of this country, and what I’m very, very worried about is that it might go in the wrong direction with someone like Donald Trump."
Since the election, De Niro stated his feelings about Trump winning the presidency are similar to how he felt during the 9/11 terrorist attack.