It’s no secret that Donald Trump is a favorite candidate among racists — and he’s OK with that. In August, when a supporter screamed “White Power” repeatedly from a position directly behind Trump, the the GOP frontrunner barely flinched. Trump, who reportedly kept a book of Adolf Hitler’s speeches by his bedside for light reading, was recently presented with another opportunity to shut down one of his racist supporters — this time directly, but the billionaire simply refused.
Thursday night at a campaign rally in Rochester, New Hampshire, one of Trump’s supporters took the mic and let his bigotry fly, asking when “we, can get rid of all the Muslims like President Obama. This was Trump’s big moment, his big chance to set the tone of the rest of his candidacy — and he blew it.
“Let’s start with this group right over here. Come on. This man, I like this guy,” Trump said, allowing the unnamed individual to ask a question — and boy, did he have a question:
“We have a problem in this country, it’s called Muslims. We know our current president is one. You know he’s not even an American–”
Trump could have, like John McCain did in 2008, corrected his supporter. Like McCain, Trump could have said “He’s a decent family man [and] citizen that I just happen to have disagreements with on fundamental issues and that’s what this campaign’s all about. He’s not [an Arab].” Instead, he simply said, “We need this question.” The man continued:
“But anyway, we have training camps brewing where they want to kill us. That’s my question, when can we get rid of ’em?”
Trump’s answer was chilling. Even if we ignore that the man falsely claimed that Obama is not an American — an assertion Trump himself has made many times, and one he should know by now to be untrue — Trump replied that “we’re” considering our options:
“We’re going to be looking at a lot of different things. A lot of people are saying that, a lot of people are saying bad things are happening out there.”
No reasonable human being would have replied as Trump did — certainly not someone who may become our next President. But here we are — Trump, a racist xenophobe who wants to kick Hispanics and Muslims out of the country is the GOP frontrunner.
Watch it below, if you must:
Colin Taylor is the editor-in-chief of Occupy Democrats. He graduated from Bennington College with a Bachelor's degree in history and political science. He now focuses on advancing the cause of social justice and equality in America.