House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) is once again calling out Trump for his racist behavior but still will not revoke his endorsement for the Republican candidate and refuses to cast blame on Trump.
In an interview Tuesday, Ryan said he does not have time to address all of Trump’s racist social media messages. According to Ryan, “Candidates should know that” racist rhetoric has no place in a presidential campaign. He also speculated the blame should fall onTrump’s campaign staff rather than the candidate: “My understanding is that this was done by staff, not by he, himself.”
In his latest sexist/racist/religionist blunder, Trump tweeted a picture of presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on a background of money. A six-point star (Star of David) next to Clinton bears the words, “Most Corrupt Candidate Ever!” The tweet was deleted and a new one was posted, this time with a circle instead of a star. It was later discovered that the original image came from a neo-Nazi, white supremacist website and has been featured on a Twitter account that routinely shares racist and anti-Semitic posts.
The issue is not worth commenting on, though, Ryan said: “We’ve got to get back to the issues that matter to the public.”
If he “had to stop everything and comment to a ridiculous tweet sent out by this campaign, I’d have no time for anything else,” Ryan added.
Trump’s repeated racist rhetoric has been an important issue and one that Ryan has commented on in the past. According to Ryan, he has “made [his feelings] really, really clear.”
“Yeah, I really believe he’s got to clean up the way his new social media works,” he said. “But most importantly, as you know, one of the few times I spoke out against him during the primary very forcefully was in this area, when he failed to disavow supremacists, white supremacists.”
Meanwhile, the Clinton campaign considered the issue important and called the image “blatantly anti-Semitic.”
“Donald Trump’s use of a blatantly anti-Semitic image from racist websites to promote his campaign would be disturbing enough, but the fact that it’s part of a pattern should give voters major cause for concern,” the campaign said in a statement. “Now, not only won’t he apologize for it, he’s peddling lies and blaming others. Trump should be condemning hate, not offering more campaign behavior and rhetoric that engages extremists.”
Despite what he describes as strong feelings against Trump’s rhetoric, and his repeated instances that Trump’s behavior is racist, Ryan endorsed Trump last month and said he is confident in the candidate. Ryan also did not withdraw his support for the candidate after admitting Trump’s rhetoric regarding Judge Gonzalo Curiel, an American judge who Trump repeatedly called “Mexican,” was racist.
Trump is scheduled to meet with House and Senate Republicans on Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reported, to discuss his “unorthodox” campaign.