(FOX 5 NEWS) - At a rally in North Carolina Tuesday, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump appeared to suggest that "Second Amendment people" -- presumably gun owners -- could prevent Hillary Clinton from appointing liberal justices to the federal courts.
"Hillary wants to abolish, essentially abolish the Second Amendment," Trump said, in reference to the hotly debated amendment in the Bill of Rights that protects the right to bear arms. "If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don't know."
That statement seemed to suggest that gun owners could somehow stop Clinton. Social media response was swift, with many interpreting Trump's line to mean he was suggesting gun owners could kill either Clinton or the judges she appoints.
But Trump's campaign soon fired back with a statement on "dishonest media."
"It's called the power of unification -- 2nd Amendment people have amazing spirit and are tremendously unified, which gives them great political power," said Jason Miller, a communications adviser to Trump's campaign. "And this year, they will be voting in record numbers, and it won't be for Hillary Clinton, it will be for Donald Trump."
The Clinton campaign, however, doesn't buy that explanation.
"This is simple--what Trump is saying is dangerous," campaign manager Robby Mook said in a statement. "A person seeking to be President of the United States should not suggest violence in any way."
The U.S. Secret Service, which protects presidential candidates, said in a tweet that it was "aware of the comments made earlier this afternoon."