Democratic 2016 candidate Hillary Clinton used an extended blog post to bash Donald Trump’s proposal to halt Muslim immigration and to also tie other Republicans to the proposal for their previous rhetoric.
“Now some of the same Republican candidates are saying that Donald Trump’s latest comments have gone too far. But the truth is, many GOP candidates have also said extreme things about Muslims,” she wrote on her campaign website Tuesday. “Their language may be more veiled than Mr. Trump’s, but their ideas aren’t so different.”
“When you take a step back and see what the Republican field as a whole says about Muslims—not just one or two candidates for President, but nearly all of them—it’s hard to take seriously their attempts to distance themselves from Mr. Trump. He’s just articulating the logical conclusion of what the rest of them have been saying,” Clinton wrote.
Trump’s proposal—which he released Monday—has been condemned across the political spectrum. (The Clinton campaign previously responded to it with a letter from aide Huma Abedin to supporters titled “I’m a proud Muslim.”) While Republicans have largely dismissed the idea of banning Muslim immigrants from entering the U.S., some stopped short of criticizing Trump outright and many still refuse to say they will not support Trump is becomes the nominee.
“Now is the time for all of us—especially Republican leaders—to stand up to hateful, dangerous words and deeds,” Clinton wrote.
The White House, through its spokesman Josh Earnest, issued an explicit challenge to Republicans to denounce Trump’s candidacy entirely for the anti-Muslim position:
“The first thing that a president does when he or she takes the oath of office is swear an oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States,” Earnest told reporters Tuesday. “And the fact is that what Donald Trump said yesterday disqualifies him from serving as president. And for Republican candidates to stand by their pledge to support Mr. Trump, that in and of itself is disqualifying.”