Trump Casts Inner Cities as ‘War Zones’ in Pitch to Minority Voters
Donald Trump tried to win over minority voters in Ohio on Monday when he suggested that inner cities were “war zones.”
The Hill reports:
Speaking at a rally in Akron, Trump painted a bleak picture of inner city life and blamed Democrats for what he described as a festering epidemic of murder and violence in crumbling minority communities across the nation.
“The Democrats have failed completely in the inner cities,” Trump said. “For those hurting the most, who have been failed and failed by their politicians, year after year, failure after failure, worse numbers after worse numbers, poverty, rejection, horrible education, no houses, no homes, no ownership, crime at levels that nobody has seen. You could go to war zones in countries that we’re fighting and it’s safer than living in some of our inner cities that are run by the Democrats.”
“It is a disaster the way African-Americans are living in many cases and in many cases the way Hispanics are living,” Trump continued. “And I say it with such a deep felt feeling, what do you have to lose? I’ll straighten it out. I’ll bring jobs back, We’ll bring spirit back. I’ll get rid of the crime, so you’ll be able to walk down the street without getting shot. Right now, you walk down the street, you get shot.”
Trump said that homicides are up 50 percent in Washington, D.C., 60 percent in Baltimore and “up all over the place no matter where you look.”
The GOP presidential nominee said those figures are “something no American should consider acceptable,” and reiterated his plea to minority voters to abandon their long-standing alliance with Democrats.
“I ask you this — crime, all of the problems, to the African-American, who I employ so many people, to the Hispanics, tremendous people: What the hell do you have to lose? Give me a chance,” Trump said. “I’ll straighten this out.”
Trump was again speaking from prepared remarks on a teleprompter at Monday’s rally but appears to have left the script for that dark assessment of the nation’s urban areas.
The speech recalled Trump’s address at the Republican National Convention, in which he described a crumbling America that was coming apart at the seams. Democrats have criticized his pessimistic view of the nation.
Trump has been emphatically pitching himself to black and Hispanic voters as he seeks to close the gap with Democrat Hillary Clinton, who is taking more than 80 percent support from non-white voters.
Trump is topping off at about 20 percent support among Hispanics in most polls. In 2012, Mitt Romney posted a disappointing showing but still reached 27 percent among Latinos.
Trump routinely polls at 1 percent or less among African-Americans, a terrible showing even for a Republican.
But the GOP nominee has been making the case that Democrats don’t deserve the support they get from these minority groups and says that the Democratic Party has taken them for granted, even as they’ve struggled socially and economically through the Obama years.
Still, Trump has offended several minority groups with his racially charged rhetoric, and many political watchers are skeptical as to whether blacks and Hispanics will be open to his pitch.
Trump sought to address that issue in a more hopeful part of his speech on Monday.
“We will reject bigotry and hatred,” Trump said. “We will reject oppression in all of its forms and seek a new future of security, prosperity and opportunity, a future built on our common culture and values as one American people.”
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