Speaker Paul Ryan remains in support of presumptive Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump, even after his despicable anti-Semitic attack this past weekend.
Ryan said yesterday that anti-Semitic images — specifically the one tweeted by Trump last weekend — have “no place” in a campaign. According to Mic, this meme originated on “an Internet message board for neo-Nazis, anti-Semites and white supremacists newly emboldened by the success of Trump’s rhetoric.”
Yet in light of this most recent bigoted attack, Ryan still remains in support of Donald Trump. It’s become a pattern for Ryan lately — the Speaker attempts to distance himself from Trump’s latest controversy with a couple words of outrage, but then he refuses to rescind his endorsement.
As Frank Sharry said, “The refusal of GOP leaders to disavow Trump’s candidacy and his remarks means that Ryan and the GOP, having embraced Trump, now own his racism, too.”
In “Paul Ryan endorsed Donald Trump one month ago. He hasn’t agreed with him since,” Amber Phillips looks at six recent incidents where Ryan has “found fault” with Trump’s remarks — or events directly tied to Trump — yet remains on the Trump Train.
The Muslim ban
What Trump said: “Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.”
What Ryan said about it: “This is not conservatism.” (An answer we thought, at the time, was pretty good, FWIW.)
What Trump said: Trump equivocated on whether to denounce support from supremacist David Duke: “Well, I have to look at the group. I mean, I don’t know what group you’re talking about.”
What Ryan said about it: “This party does not prey on people’s prejudices. I hope this is the last time I need to speak out on this race.” (Nope!)
Violence at Trump rallies
What Trump said: “Knock the crap out of him, would you?” Trump said to his supporters at a February rally of a potential tomato thrower.
What Ryan said about it: The violence at Trump’s rallies is “very concerning,” adding: “I think the candidates need to take responsibility for the environment at their events. There is never an excuse for condoning violence, or even a culture that presupposes it.”
Judge Gonzalo Curiel
What Trump said: From the Wall Street Journal: “The judge has ‘an absolute conflict’ in presiding over the litigation given that he was ‘of Mexican heritage.’ “
What Ryan said about it: Ryan told a Wisconsin radio stationthe comments were “out of left field” and asked Trump to knock it off: “He clearly says and does things I don’t agree with, and I’ve had to speak up on time to time when that has occurred, and I’ll continue to do that if it’s necessary. I hope it’s not.”
(Notable: This happened literally the day after Ryan endorsed Trump.)
What Trump said: “I have had horrible rulings. I’ve been treated very unfairly by this guy. Now this judge is of Mexican heritage. I’m building a wall.”
What Ryan said about it: It’s “the textbook definition of a racist comment.”
A footnote: In an interview Sunday with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Ryan seemed self-aware of this pattern. Instead of hoping Tuesday was the last time he’d have to rebuke Trump, a resigned Ryan predicted that it would happen again: “It isn’t the first time I’ve had to do it, and it won’t be the last time if this continues.”
The Muslim ban (again)
What Trump said: In the wake of the June 12 Orlando nightclub shooting, Trump doubled down on his proposal to temporarily ban immigrants from the country, shifting his proposal from Muslims in particular to people from countries with a history of terrorism.
From The Washington Post’s Jose DelReal: Trump said that he would suspend immigration “from areas of the world where there’s a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe and our allies.”
What Ryan said: Still a hard no on that.