On Sunday, Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump defended his refusal to correct one of his bigoted fans’ assertion that not only is the President a Muslim who isn’t an American, but that we need to “get rid” of every single Muslim. But it’s OK — the billionaire isn’t quite sure what he would say if someone wanted to deport black people, either.
“You are running to be the president of the United States of America,” CNN’s Jake Tapper told Trump. “This man said — quote — ‘We have a problem in this country and it’s called Muslims.’ You are not responsible for what he says, but this is raw unvarnished ignorant bigotry.”
Trump complained that people expected him to do the “politically correct” thing (most of us call it the “right thing”) by correcting his obviously bigoted follower, arguing that there really is a Muslim problem.
“Are you trying to say we don’t have a problem?” Trump asked Tapper. “I have friends that are Muslims, they are great people, they are amazing people. And most Muslims, like most everything, they are fabulous people, but we certainly do have a problem. I mean, you have a problem throughout the world.”
“What’s the problem?” Tapper asked, leading Trump to point out that it certainly wasn’t white people who blew up the World Trade Center:
“Well, you have radicals who are doing things. It wasn’t people from Sweden who blew up the World Trade Center, Jake.”
Tapper reminded that the actions of extremists, who comprise a small percentage of the total Muslim population, do not represent the totality of the population, but Trump maintained that “It’s a problem in this country and it’s a problem throughout the world.”
Last week, Trump’s supporter insisted that there are Muslim “training camps” scattered across the nation — an assertion with which Trump certainly doesn’t seem to disagree. And, of course, on Meet the Press, Trump indicated that he agreed with the sentiments of his bigoted follower about the President’s religion. When Chuck Todd reminded the Republican favorite that he said he would have “no problem putting a Muslim in” the White House, Trump replied that “some people have said it already happened.” Since the “Muslim” incident Trump, who bears quite a bit of responsibility for the spread of questions about the President’s birth certificate and religion, has fervently avoided answering whether or not he believes Obama was born in the United States, or whether or not the President is a Christian.
Tapper presented Trump with another possibility: What if his supporter had replaced “Muslims” with pretty much any other racial, religious, or ethnic group?:
“What if he had said we have a problem in this world, it’s called blacks? Would you have said something then?”
Trump could have indicated that he would shut down a racist who made that complaint — but, of course, he was perfectly fine with a supporter who screamed “White power” repeatedly at a rally last month. In fact, the official response from the trump campaign is that white supremacists are simply “very receptive to” Trump’s message, an apparent endorsement of the man’s views. The billionaire instead indicated that a supporter who says we need to “get rid” of all the blacks should be allowed the time to make his case.
“No,” Trump told Tapper. “I would have probably just — I listened to his question. I mean, who am I? I listened to his question, he made a question slash, probably, statement. And I listened to his question, and I actually didn’t respond.”
Except Trump did respond. “We’re going to be looking at a lot of different things,” he told “‘Get Rid of All Muslims’ Guy,” adding that “A lot of people are saying that, a lot of people are saying bad things are happening out there.”
“But we do have a problem with radical Muslims, there’s no question about that,” Trump continued. “I think you would be the first to admit that.”
“I don’t think it’s the same thing as saying we have a problem with Muslims,” Tapper repled. “But I don’t think we’re going to get very far.”
Trump maintained that he has a lot of Muslim friends, who are “tremendous people.” Of course, he has made similar statements about “blacks” with whom he has a “great relationship” and Hispanics, as well.
Watch Trump waffle on whether or not he would let someone make the case for “getting rid” of all black people, below:[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OcF6xrhKA6M&w=640&h=360]
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