Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump made getting the Black vote a partial focus of his campaign speech Tuesday night, accusing Democrats of damaging African-Americans and going as far as calling Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton a “bigot.”
Centering on inner cities, Trump pointed out crime statistics, poverty, poor education and lack of opportunity that have been problematic for decades and blamed them on Democratic politicians who have been in charge of city halls in the nation’s largest municipalities for decades.
“The Democratic Party has failed and betrayed the African-American community. Democratic crime policies, education policies and economic policies have produced only more crime, more broken homes and more poverty,” Trump said. “To every voter in Milwaukee, to every voter living in the inner city or every forgotten stretch of our society, I’m running to offer you a much better future.”
Ironically, Trump made this speech in suburban West Bend, Wis., which is 94 percent White, as nearby Milwaukee was dealing with the aftermath of unrest for two nights when a police shooting resulted in the death of a Black man. However last week, Trump made a campaign stop in Detroit, which is 82 percent Black, but made no mention of race in his speech there.
“We reject the bigotry of Hillary Clinton, which panders to and talks down to communities of color and sees them only as votes — that’s all they care about,” said Trump. “The riots and destruction that have taken place in Milwaukee is an assault on the right of all citizens to live in security and to live in peace.” he said.
Clinton campaign spokeswoman Jennifer Palmieri responded with a statement early Wednesday accusing Trump of being the bigot instead.
“With each passing Trump attack, it becomes clearer that his strategy is just to say about Hillary Clinton what’s true of himself. When people started saying he was temperamentally unfit, he called Hillary the same,” Palmieri said. “Now he’s accusing her of bigoted remarks — We think the American people will know which candidate is guilty of the charge.”
Trump, has remained largely unpopular with Black voters and his campaign has wrenched its hands on how it might attract more to the polls in his support. In June, he appointed former “The Apprentice” star Omarosa Manigault as his director of African American outreach. But that has not resulted in better poll numbers among Blacks. A Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll showed Trump receiving only one percent of the Black vote.
— With AP