|If you wondered why his supporters at one of his rallies were yelling |
"white power" — Now you know.
Illustration by DonkeyHotey.
By Jon Swaine
Donald Trump on Sunday defended his failure to challenge a supporter who made anti-Muslim remarks at one of his presidential campaign rallies, by saying he would have responded the same way if the man had attacked black people.
Speaking as new polls indicated that he continues to lead the Republican 2016 primary field, Trump rejected suggestions that he was wrong to indulge the man, who told him in New Hampshire on Thursday: “We have a problem in this country. It’s called Muslims.”
Asked on CNN if he would have felt moved to correct the supporter if the man had said “we have a problem in this world, it’s called blacks”, Trump refused to back down.
“No, I would have probably just listened to his question,” he said. “I mean, who am I?”
Trump has been sharply criticised for his response to the supporter, who stated President Obama was Muslim and claimed “we have training camps, growing, where they want to kill us” while asking the opening question at the rally in Derry.
“A lot of people are saying that, and a lot of people are saying that bad things are happening out there,” Trump replied. “We’re going to be looking at that and plenty of other things.”
Interviewed later on ABC News, Trump refused to say whether or not he believed Obama was a Muslim born overseas. The property tycoon has in recent years been a leading light in the so-called “birther” movement based around the conspiracy theory that the president was born in Kenya.
“I don’t get into it,” Trump repeated on Sunday, when asked if Obama was born in the US. “Frankly, it’s no longer of interest to me.”