Editorials

GOP leaders repudiate Trump, finally

House Speaker Paul Ryan said Tuesday that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s idea to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. is “not what this party stands for and more importantly it's not what this country stands for.”
House Speaker Paul Ryan said Tuesday that Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s idea to ban Muslims from entering the U.S. is “not what this party stands for and more importantly it's not what this country stands for.” The Associated Press

Just maybe, Donald Trump has gone too far with his insane call for a Muslim ban, even for Republican leaders.

They are rightly condemning the GOP front-runner for calling on Muslims to be barred from entering the U.S.

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell disavowed the idea. Former Vice President Dick Cheney said it “goes against everything we stand for and believe in.” GOP presidential hopeful Jeb Bush called Trump “unhinged.”

It’s long overdue, but responsible Republicans are trying to regain their party. But by letting Trump cross so many lines for so long, they have boxed themselves in: The other candidates have all pledged to support the GOP nominee, so what if Trump wins?

As usual, Trump isn’t backing down. Instead, on Tuesday, he reprehensibly tried to cloak himself in 9/11, claiming that without his ban, “you’re going to have many more World Trade Centers.”

As for this latest outrage – it gives it too much credence to call it a proposal – it’s wrong in so many ways, it’s difficult to know where to start.

It’s almost certainly unconstitutional. It definitely goes against America’s founding principles of religious liberty and tolerance. It’s wholly impractical: How would you ever determine if someone is Muslim at airports and borders?

And it would hand the terrorists exactly what they want – a war between America and Islam.

“He’s putting our soldiers and diplomats at risk; he’s empowering the enemy,” Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina told CNN.

It tells you all you need to know that Trump and his backers are defending this monstrous idea by comparing it to the internment of Japanese Americans after Pearl Harbor, one of the most shameful episodes in our history.

But Trump has proved he has no shame. Instead, he plays to nativists who cheered him Monday in South Carolina when he pitched his plan.

To keep his poll numbers up, Trump is using last week’s San Bernardino massacre, since the killers appear to have been Islamic State sympathizers. He also cites a questionable poll put out by an anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist, when far more reputable surveys show that the nearly 3 million American Muslims oppose the terrorists, just like everyone else.

By demonizing an entire religion, Trump is inciting discrimination and hate. He might even be encouraging violence.

Will Trump feel any remorse then?

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