Trump: ‘I’d Love to See Kaepernick Back in the NFL But Only if He is Good Enough’

President Donald Trump said he’d “love to see” former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick back in the league, “but only if he is good enough.”

Trump made Kaepernick a target of his ire during his 2016 election campaign, frequently trashing the ex-San Francisco 49er for kneeling during the National Anthem. Kaepernick was protesting racial injustice in America

“I think if he was good enough, I know the owners, I know Bob Kraft, I know so many of the owners. If he’s good enough they’d sign him. So if he’s good enough, I know these people. They would sign him in a heartbeat. They will do anything they can to win games,” Trump told reporters before leaving for a vacation Friday.

“Frankly, I’d love to see Kaepernick come in if he’s good enough. But I don’t want to see him come in because somebody thinks of it’s a good PR move. If he’s good enough, he will be in,” Trump said.

Earlier this year, Kaepernick settled a collusion lawsuit with the NFL, which is subject to a confidentiality agreement.

Kaepernick alleged that NFL owners conspired to keep him off the field after the end of his 2016 contract due to his activism.

Earlier this week, Kaepernick posted a work-out video indicating he was still interested in getting back to playing with an NFL team.

[Mediaite]

Trump Claims He’s ‘Least Racist Person’ While Calling Don Lemon ‘Dumbest Man’ On TV

President Donald Trump lambasted CNN’s Don Lemon as “dumb” and “stupid” after the Democratic debate moderator asked questions about the president’s “bigotry” on Tuesday.

Trump called Lemon, who is black, “the dumbest man on television” on Twitter Wednesday, an insult he has used against the CNN anchor in the past.

The president also insisted he is “the least racist person in the world,” appearing to quote himself. In the last month, he has unleashed racist attacks on four Democratic congresswomen of color, as well as Rep. Elijah Cummings and the predominantly black city of Baltimore.

Lemon asked a series of questions regarding the current administration and race during Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential debate on CNN.

He asked former Rep. Beto O’Rourke, and later former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, about Trump’s race baiting: “President Trump is pursuing a reelection strategy based in part, on racial division. How do you convince primary voters that you’d be the best nominee to take on President Trump and heal the racial divide in America?”

O’Rourke responded that we should “call his racism out for what it is, and also talk about its consequences.”

“It doesn’t just offend our sensibilities to hear him say ‘send her back,’ about a member of Congress, because she’s a woman color, because she’s a Muslim-American, doesn’t just offend our sensibilities when he calls Mexican immigrants ‘rapists and criminals,’ or seeks to ban all Muslims from the shores of a country that’s comprised of people from the world over, from every tradition of faith,” said the Texan.

Lemon also asked Sen. Amy Klobuchar what she’d “say to those Trump voters who prioritize the economy over the president’s bigotry?”

Klobuchar responded that “there are people that voted for Donald Trump before that aren’t racist; they just wanted a better shake in the economy. And so I would appeal to them,” before adding: “I don’t think anyone can justify what this president is doing.”

Trump’s attack on Lemon echoed comments from right-wing commentators, including Fox News’ Howard Kurtz and Laura Ingraham, who questioned why Lemon would say Trump “traffics in racial division.”

O’Rourke tweeted Wednesday that “Donald Trump is a racist,” alongside a video of his response to Lemon’s question.

[Huffington Post]

Trump keeps up fight with black community by launching feud with Al Sharpton

President Donald Trump launched a feud with the Rev. Al Sharpton on Monday, escalating a series of attacks on prominent black leaders and minority progressives.Trump has recently called out minority lawmakers and leaders in an effort to define the Democratic Party and strengthen his base ahead of the 2020 presidential election. His morning tirade against Sharpton, a longtime African-American activist, come after a weekend in which the President repeatedly assailed Maryland Democratic Rep. Elijah Cummings, who is black, and the city of Baltimore, parts of which lie in Cummings’ district. Later Monday, Sharpton is set to hold a press conference in Baltimore with former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, a Republican, “to address Trump’s remarks & bi-partisan outrage in the black community.”In his tweets on Monday, Trump called Sharpton a “con man, a troublemaker” who “Hates Whites & Cops!” He also claimed that during the 2016 election, Sharpton visited him at Trump Tower “to apologize for the way he was talking about me.”

In response, Sharpton tweeted a photo of Trump speaking to him, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the late James Brown, writing, “Trump at (National Action Network) Convention 2006 telling James Brown and Jesse Jackson why he respects my work. Different tune now.” Sharpton did not address Trump’s specific claims in Monday’s tweets.

Trump ignited a racial controversy earlier this month when he repeatedly used racist language to attack four minority Democratic lawmakers. Trump has denied accusations of racism, but he hasn’t apologized for his language. On Saturday, Trump lashed out at Cummings, the House Oversight chairman who recently lambasted conditions at the border, suggesting that conditions in Cummings’ district, which is majority black and includes parts of Baltimore, are “FAR WORSE and more dangerous” than those at the US-Mexico border and called it a “very dangerous & filthy place.”

In response, Cummings tweeted that “Each morning, I wake up, and I go and fight for my neighbors. It is my constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. But, it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents.”

[CNN]

Donald Trump Accused of racism, Then blasts black congressman as racist

Facing growing accusations of racism for his incendiary tweets, President Donald Trump lashed out at his critics Monday and sought to deflect the criticism by labeling a leading black congressman as himself racist.

In the latest rhetorical shot at lawmakers of color, Trump said his weekend comments referring to Rep. Elijah Cummings’ majority-black Baltimore district as a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess” where “no human being would want to live” were not racist. Instead, Trump argued, “if racist Elijah Cummings would focus more of his energy on helping the good people of his district, and Baltimore itself, perhaps progress could be made in fixing the mess.”

“His radical ‘oversight’ is a joke!” Trump tweeted Sunday.

After a weekend of attacks on Cummings, the son of former sharecroppers who rose to become the powerful chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, Trump expanded his attacks Monday to include a prominent Cummings defender, the Rev. Al Sharpton, who was traveling to Baltimore to hold a press conference in condemnation of the president.

“Al is a con man, a troublemaker, always looking for a score,” Trump tweeted ahead of the press conference, adding that the civil rights activist and MSNBC host “Hates Whites & Cops!”

Trump appeared to dig a deeper hole even as a top White House aide sought to dismiss the controversy by describing Trump’s comments as hyperbole. Two weeks ago, Trump caused a nationwide uproar with racist tweets directed at four Democratic congresswomen of color as he looked to stoke racial divisions for political gain heading into the 2020 election.

Trump noted that Democratic presidential contender and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders had “recently equated” parts of Baltimore to a “third world country” in 2015 comments.

“I assume that Bernie must now be labeled a Racist, just as a Republican would if he used that term and standard,” Trump tweeted Monday.

Sanders tweeted back that “Trump’s lies and racism never end. While I have been fighting to lift the people of Baltimore and elsewhere out of poverty with good paying jobs, housing and health care, he has been attacking workers and the poor.”

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan, a Republican, on Monday called the president’s comments “just outrageous and inappropriate.” Hogan, the new chairman of the National Governors Association, said he recently gave an address at the NGA about the angry and divisive politics that “are literally tearing America apart.”

“I think enough is enough,” Hogan said on the C4 Radio Show in Baltimore. “I mean, people are just completely fed up with this kind of nonsense, and why are we not focused on solving the problems and getting to work instead of who’s tweeting what, and who’s calling who what kind of names. I mean, it’s just absurd.”

Michael Steele, the state’s former lieutenant governor who went on to serve as the national chairman of the Republican National Committee, said it was “reprehensible to talk about the city the way” Trump did, but he hoped the attention would elevate the conversation about how to help urban areas, and he invited the president to be a part of the conversation.

“Put down the cellphone and the tweeting and come walk the streets in this community so that you can see firsthand the good and the difficult that needs to be addressed, and let’s do it together,” Steele told the radio show.

Speaking in television interviews on Sunday, acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said Trump was reacting in frustration to the Democrats’ unrelenting investigations and talk of impeachment. He said Trump swung hard at Cummings and his Baltimore district because he believes such Capitol Hill critics are neglecting serious problems back home in their zeal to unfairly undermine his presidency.

“I understand that everything that Donald Trump says is offensive to some people,” Mulvaney said. But he added: “The president is pushing back against what he sees as wrong. It’s how he’s done it in the past, and he’ll continue to do it in the future.”

Mulvaney, a former congressman, said he understood why some people could perceive Trump’s words as racist.

Mulvaney said Trump’s words were exaggerated for effect — “Does the president speak hyperbolically? Absolutely” — and meant to draw attention to Democratic-backed investigations of the Republican president and his team in Washington.

He asserted that Trump’s barbs were a reaction to what the president considered to be inaccurate statements by Cummings about conditions in which children are being held in detention at the U.S.-Mexico border.

At a hearing last week, Cummings accused a top administration official of wrongly calling reports of filthy, overcrowded border facilities “unsubstantiated.”

“When the president hears lies like that, he’s going to fight back,” Mulvaney said.

The president has tried to put racial polarization at the center of his appeal to his base of voters, tapping into anxieties about demographic and cultural changes.

Cummings is leading multiple investigations of the president’s governmental dealings. In his direct response to Trump on Twitter, Cummings said: “Mr. President, I go home to my district daily. Each morning, I wake up, and I go and fight for my neighbors. It is my constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. But, it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents.”

Cummings has also drawn the president’s ire for investigations touching on his family members serving in the White House. His committee voted along party lines Thursday to authorize subpoenas for personal emails and texts used for official business by top White House aides, including Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner.

Earlier this month, Trump drew bipartisan condemnation following his call for Democratic Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan to get out of the U.S. “right now.” He said that if the lawmakers “hate our country,” they can go back to their “broken and crime-infested” countries.

All four lawmakers of color are American citizens and three of the four were born in the U.S.

[Associated Press]

Trump reverses course, defends racist chants directed at Ilhan Omar

One day after he made an unconvincing attempt to distance himself from the racist chantsthat rang out at his rally in North Carolina on Wednesday night — something his fellow Republicans said they were welcome to see — President Donald Trump abruptly reversed course and defended them.

During an Oval Office event on Friday that was ostensibly to honor Apollo 11 astronauts, Trump cut off a reporter who tried to ask him about his effort to distance himself from the chants, and instead offered a full-throated defense of not only his supporters who made them but also racist tweets he posted last Sunday that incited them.

“You know what I’m unhappy with? I’m unhappy with the fact that a congresswoman can hate our country,” Trump said, alluding to Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), one of a group of four congresswomen of color whom he last Sunday admonished on Twitter to “go back” to the countries they came from (Omar is a Somali refugee; the other three women were born in America). “I’m unhappy with the fact that a congresswoman can say anti-Semitic things. I’m unhappy with the fact that a congresswoman — in this case, a different congresswoman — can call our country, and our people, garbage. That’s what I’m unhappy with.”

Trump then turned to defending the people at his rally, who chanted “send her back!” after he viciously attacked Omar using misleading claims like the ones he made on Friday. (For instance, despite what Trump claimed in the Oval Office, none of the congresswomen in question have called America or its people “garbage.”)

“Those people in North Carolina, that stadium was packed,” Trump said. “It was a record crowd and I could’ve filled it 10 times, as you know. Those are incredible people, those are incredible patriots. But I’m unhappy when a congresswoman goes and says, ‘I’m going to be the president’s nightmare.’ She’s going to be the president’s nightmare. She’s lucky to be where she is, let me tell you. And the things she has said are a disgrace to our country.”

Trump’s comments came hours after he similarly suggested on Twitter that the racist chants were somehow justified because there were so many people — “packed Arena (a record) crowd” — at his rally.

Trump’s “incredible people” line echoed how he defended white supremacists following violent rallies in Charlottesville, Virginia, two summers ago, when he infamously characterized them as “very fine people.” And for those who have been paying attention, the president’s latest defense of racism shouldn’t come as a surprise.

Trump told us this week he isn’t concerned about his or his supporters’ racism because “many people agree” with him

While Trump’s comments on Friday are out of step with what he said on Thursday — when he made a far-fetched attempt to distance himself from the chants by insisting he “started speaking very quickly” to quell them, which is inconsistent with video of the incident — they’re in line with what he said on Tuesday, when he defended his racist “go back” tweets.

Asked during a White House event that day if it concerns him that “many people saw that tweet as racist and that white nationalist groups are finding common cause with you on that point,” Trump said he is not.

“It doesn’t concern me because many people agree with me,” he said.

These comments provide a window into how Trump thinks about the world. Moral judgments take a back seat to whatever people around him think. Racism is okay because many of his supporters are also prejudiced, and they agree with him when he makes loaded attacks on women of color. And as a matter of expedience, Trump views stoking his supporters’ sense of white grievance as a way to motivate them to go out and vote, and hence as a premeditated strategy to win a second term in office.

Trump is concerned with doing what he perceives to be most beneficial for himself, not about rightness or wrongness in any sense beyond that. To that end, he’s now walked back the insincere effort he made just the day before to distance himself from an ugly incident that represented a new low in his long history of racial demagoguery. And as long as he perceives that Omar and other congresswomen are useful political foils for him, it’s likely that such chants will become a staple at his rallies going forward.

[Vox]

Trump supporters chant ‘send her back’ as president hurls racially-charged accusations at Rep. Omar

President Donald Trump went through a series of things he said Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) had said that he deemed anti-American. He said that she belittled 9/11 and a slew of other accusations that were racially charged.

His crowd booed each thing he checked off of the box things he hated about her. But then the crowd began chanting “send her back! Send her back!”

Omar is an immigrant from Somalia who emigrated along with her parents when she was just 12 years old. Her family claimed asylum from their war-torn country.

Trump said on Twitter that he believed she along with three other Congresswomen of color should be sent back to the countries they’re from. Trump’s campaign and Republicans proceeded to spend the days that followed, saying that Trump simply wanted them to leave the U.S. if they didn’t like it so much. Today’s chant from his supporters proved once again, that the “love it or leave it” spin isn’t working.

[Raw Story]

Media

Trump Attacks Congresswomen in Unhinged Presser: ‘They Hate Our Country’ With a Passion, ‘They Hate Jews’

In his first public comments since he leveled attacks on Democratic congresswomen that many saw as racist, President Donald Trump defended his tweets in a press conference on the south lawn of the White House.

Trump took questions in a contentious back-and-forth from the press and continued to hit Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) for “hating Israel” and three other freshman congresswomen, namely Rep. Ayanna Pressley, Rep. Rashida Tlaiband Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the last of which he blamed for Amazon not building a East Coast headquarters in Queens, New York.

“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” Trump wrote of the congresswomen in a Twitter thread Sunday morning.

“They are very unhappy,” Trump told reporters on Monday. “I’m watching them, all they do is complain. All I’m saying, if they want to leave, they can leave.”

He then turned his focus of derision on Rep. Omar, referring to her as “somebody that comes from Somalia.” He continued that Omar is “never happy, says horrible things about Israel, hates Israel, hates Jews.”

“I look at the one, I look at Omar,” Trump said. “I don’t know, I never met her. I hear the way she talks about Al Qaeda. Al Qaeda has killed many Americans.”

He finished, “They can leave, and you know what? I’m sure there will be many people that want to miss them.”

Trump spoke at length, ultimately claiming that these four congresswomen, “hate our country … with a passion” before oddly lamenting how the “Democrat party” would be making a big political mistake by getting behind these four individuals.

[Mediaite]

Reality

Trump lied about Omar’s Al Qaeda comments.

Trump says he’s not concerned about being racist because “many people agree” with him

President Donald Trump said on Monday that he’s not concerned about coming across as racist in tweets he posted on Sunday admonishing Democratic women of color in Congress to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” because many people agree with him. No, really.

While Trump was taking questions from reporters during an event that was ostensibly supposed to be a “Made in America Product Showcase,” Fox News reporter John Roberts asked him if it concerns him that “many people saw that tweet as racist and that white nationalist groups are finding common cause with you on that point?”

Trump said that he is not, in fact, worried about it.

“It doesn’t concern me because many people agree with me,” he said. “And all I’m saying — they want to leave, they can leave. Now, it doesn’t say, ‘Leave forever.’ It says, ‘Leave if you want.’”

Trump quickly pivoted to talking about the stock market hitting all-time highs — as though the existence of a relatively strong economy stands on its own as a refutation of anyone who would criticize the American government. His comments were applauded.

Watch:

Trump also escalated his attacks on Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) — who, along with Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI), is one of the first Muslim women to serve in Congress — by baselessly accusing her of being an al-Qaeda sympathizer.

“I mean, I look at the one, I look at Omar — I don’t know, I never met her — I hear the way she talks about al-Qaeda. Al-Qaeda has killed many Americans. She said, ‘You can hold your chest out. When I think of America — uhh. When I think of al-Qaeda, I can hold my chest out,’” Trump said. “These are people that in my opinion hate our country … they can leave … they have to love our country.”

Trump went on to accuse Omar of “speaking about how wonderful al-Qaeda is” and said she “hates Jews.”

Trump’s latest attack on Omar represents a grotesque distortion of what she said during a 2013 interview with a public television station. Referring to her experiences as a college student Omar said, “When I was in college, I took a terrorism class … every time the professor said ‘al-Qaeda,’ his shoulders went up. … But you know … you don’t say ‘America’ with an intensity, you don’t say ‘England’ with the intensity. You don’t say ‘the army’ with the intensity … But you say these names [of terrorist groups] because you want that word to carry weight. You want it to be something.”

At no point did Omar say anything even close to praising al-Qaeda. And while she has criticized Israel in a manner that some thought invoked anti-Semitic tropes, Trump’s claim that she “hates Jews” is also a dangerous exaggeration. (Omar was inundated with death threatsearlier this year after Trump posted a video suggesting she sympathized with 9/11 attackers.)

In short, the president isn’t concerned about being racist because other people out there are racist too. He also doesn’t seem particularly concerned about the safety of a duly elected Congress member, given that his obscene lies about her are likely to result in her receiving threats.

Meanwhile, the Republican Party — which holds a majority in the Senate and thus has the power to prevent Trump from being removed from office — barely seems capable at this point of criticizing the president’s explicit bigotry. Such is the state of play in American politics.

[Vox]

Trump says Black congresswomen should ‘go back’ where ‘they came’ from

President Donald Trump on Sunday said progressive congresswomen should “go back” and try to fix the “crime infested places” they “originally came from” before telling the U.S. government how to handle its problems.

“So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run,” Trump wrote in a series of three tweets.

“Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” the president continued. “Then come back and show us how it is done. These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough. I’m sure that Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to quickly work out free travel arrangements!”

Though he did not mention anyone by name in his tweets, the president appeared to be referring to a group of progressive congresswomen who have generated headlines and whose influence was recently downplayed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

That group includes Democratic Reps. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts.

Tlaib, a Palestinian American, was born in Michigan; Omar, a Somali refugee, moved to the U.S. when she was 12 and is a naturalized U.S. citizen; Ocasio-Cortez, who is of Latin-American descent, was born in New York; and Pressley, who is African American, was born in Cincinnati.

Ocasio-Cortez responded to Trump on Twitter Sunday afternoon, saying “the country I ‘come from,’ & the country we all swear to, is the United States.”

“But given how you’ve destroyed our border with inhumane camps, all at a benefit to you & the corps who profit off them, you are absolutely right about the corruption laid at your feet,” she continued. She added that Trump is “angry because” he doesn’t “believe in an America where I represent New York 14, where the good people of Minnesota elected [Omar], where [Tlaib] fights for Michigan families, where [Pressley] champions little girls in Boston.”

“You are angry because you can’t conceive of an America that includes us,” she said. “You rely on a frightened America for your plunder.”

Omar also responded to Trump in a tweet on Sunday, saying she and her fellow members swear an oath only to the U.S., “Which is why we are fighting to protect it from the worst, most corrupt and inept president we have ever seen.”

Pelosi on Sunday blasted Trump’s screed, saying that when the president “tells four American Congresswomen to go back to their countries, he reaffirms his plan to ‘Make America Great Again’ has always been about making America white again.”

“Our diversity is our strength and our unity is our power,” the California Democrat added.

Trump’s tweets were swiftly condemned by other congressional Democrats, including presidential candidates, who called them “racist” and “bigoted.”

[NBC News]

Trump ignores black #1 NFL pick to congratulate white player with history of racist tweets

In his first tweet on Saturday morning, President Donald Trump ignored the first player picked in the NFL draft, Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray, who is black, to praise the number two pick — a white player with a history of racist tweets.

In his tweet, Trump skipped over the Heisman Trophy winner to celebrate Ohio State’s Nick Bosa — who missed most of the 2018 season — for being picked second.

“Congratulations to Nick Bosa on being picked number two in the NFL Draft. You will be a great player for years to come, maybe one of the best. Big Talent! San Francisco will embrace you but most importantly, always stay true to yourself. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!” he tweeted.

According to to the San Franciso Chronicle,”Bosa recently deleted tweets in which he called Colin Kaepernick a ‘clown,’ referred to Beyonce’s music as ‘complete trash’ and called ‘Black Panther’ the worst Marvel movie. On Thursday, the website Blacksportsonline posted threads showing Bosa following and liking accounts that feature white nationalist posts. The twitter feed @rzstprogramming showed Bosa retweeted a tweet referring to ‘crappernick.’”

[Raw Story]

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