Trump Faces New Backlash Over Pitch to Black Voters
On the heels of another staff shakeup, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was facing a new backlash – this time for his attempt to get black voters to vote for him in the November election.
At a campaign rally near Lansing, Michigan, on Friday, Trump asked what African-Americans have to lose by voting for him.
CBS News correspondent Errol Barnett reports it was supposed to be a day for a clean slate, but Trump’s latest attempted outreach to a larger voting bloc was called ignorant and heavy-handed by his critics.
“Look how much African-American communities have suffered under Democratic control. You’re living in poverty. Your schools are no good. You have no jobs. To those I say the following: What do you have to lose?”
Speaking from a predominately white suburb in Michigan. Trump tried to increase his support from African-American voters, which according to a recent Pew survey favor Hillary Clinton over the Republican nominee by an 83-point margin.
“You’re living in poverty,” Trump said. “Your schools are no good. You have no jobs – 58 percent of your youth is unemployed. What the hell do you have to lose?”
Moments after the speech, Clinton responded with a tweet.
This is so ignorant it’s staggering. https://t.co/t2fZl9sqKs
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 19, 2016
(h/t CBS News)
Trump’s comments seem to be the result of him trying to correct his incredibly low numbers with black voters in recent polls. A recent NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll showed 91 percent of black voters favoring Clinton in comparison to one percent of black voters favoring Trump. At a rally in June, Trump showed he was in touch with black voters by singling out a black man in the crowd and calling him “my African American.”
Trump has also come under criticism from delivering his message to predominantly white cities while neglecting to entertain meeting with African American organizations like the NAACP.
Trump has a curious habit of reiterating the thoughts of white supremacists on social media, particularly when they are being complimentary toward him. When these presumed supporters are revealed to be racists, Trump has not removed his retweets (in some cases from the same user) or apologized for the presumed oversight.
Also, allegations of racism have dogged Trump’s campaign from the beginning, when he said undocumented Mexican immigrants were “rapists” during his announcement speech last June. And while Trump has offended Asian-Americans, Latino-Americans, Arab-Americans and Native Americans in the past, his transgressions as far as the black community is concerned could be even more costly come November.
For example, Donald Trump said in July he believes the Black Lives Matter movement has in some cases helped instigate the recent killings of police officers, and suggested he might direct his future attorney general to investigate the civil rights activist group. Trump also called the group a “threat” and accused the group of “essentially calling death to the police.”
African American Unemployment at 58%
Donald Trump has claimed several times that 58 percent of African-American youths are unemployed — more than double the government’s monthly breakdown.
According to BLS numbers, last month’s unemployment rate among 16-to-19-year-old black Americans was 25.7 percent, adjusted seasonally.