Trump Rejects Clinton’s Charges of Racism, Ties to KKK

Donald Trump on Thursday came out swinging against Hillary Clinton for her recent attacks in response to his personal outreach to minority voters, and labeling him as a racist, suggesting it’s an attack on “decent people” supporting the Republican ticket.

“The news reports are that Hillary Clinton is going to try to accuse this campaign, and the millions of decent Americans who support this campaign, of being racists, which we are not,” Trump said at a campaign rally in New Hampshire. “It’s the oldest play in the Democratic playbook. When Democratic policies fail, they are left with only this one tired argument. It’s a tired and disgusting argument, It’s the last refuge of the discredited politician.”

“Voters are used to the old game where failed politicians like Hillary Clinton falsely smear Republicans with charges of racism. Republicans then back down,” Trump continued. “Democrats then continue to push policies that are devastating to communities of color. To Hillary Clinton, and to her donors and advisors, pushing her to spread her smears and her lies about decent people, I have three words. I want you to hear these words, and remember these words: Shame On You.”

According to Trump, Clinton is trying to shift the conversation because she can’t defend her record. “What does she do when she can’t defend her record? She lies, she smears, she paints decent Americans as racists,” he said. “She bullies voters, who only want a better future, and tries to intimidate them out of voting for change.”

The Republican presidential nominee was referring to a new video released Thursday by Clinton’s campaign that ties him to white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups – ahead of a speech that will accuse Trump of cozying up to the alt-right.

“The reason a lot of Klan members like Donald Trump is because a lot of what he believes, we believe in,” a man identified as the Imperial Wizard of the Rebel Brigade Knights of the Ku Klux Klan is seen as saying, followed by images of a man performing a Hitler salute at a Trump rally. The ad also shows a clip of  Trump failing to disavow an endorsement by David Duke and the KKK on CNN earlier this year.

“If Trump wins, they could be running the country,” the video concludes.

In response, the Trump campaign released the following statement signed by Pastor Mark Burns. “Hillary Clinton and her campaign went to a disgusting new low today as they released a video tying the Trump Campaign with horrific racial images. This type of rhetoric and repulsive advertising is revolting and completely beyond the pale. I call on Hillary Clinton to disavow this video and her campaign for this sickening act that has no place in our world.”

Last week, Trump issued an unequivocal rejection of bigotry and hate, and has been repeating the same line all week long on the stump. “We will reject bigotry and hatred and oppression in all of its many ugly forms,” Trump said at a campaign rally in Wisconsin last Tuesday.

The Anti-Defamation League welcomed Trump’s statement. In a statement to Jewish Insider, ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said, “It’s a good sign and an important, clear rejection of hate. We hope that in the months ahead Mr. Trump and all the candidates will live up to this welcome statement.”

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