Republican presidential frontrunner and former U.S. President Donald Trump stated during a campaign event that undocumented immigrants were “poisoning the blood of our country,” again using language previously criticized as xenophobic and reminiscent of Nazi rhetoric.
Trump’s anti-immigrant remark: On Saturday, Trump spoke at Whittemore Center Arena on the campus of University of New Hampshire in Durham, where he criticized his opponents Nikki Haley and Chris Christie before targeting President Joe Biden. He linked his remarks to concerns about migrants crossing the U.S. border, promising to crack down on illegal immigration and restrict legal immigration if re-elected in 2024.
During an anti-immigrant rant, Trump claimed that immigrants are detrimental to the American nation and alleged that they have done the same globally in mental institutions and prisons.
“When they let — I think the real number is 15, 16 million people into our country — when they do that, we got a lot of work to do. They’re poisoning the blood of our country,” Trump said. “That’s what they’ve done. They’ve poisoned mental institutions and prisons all over the world — not just in South America, not just the three or four countries that we think about, but all over the world. They’re coming into our country, from Africa, from Asia — all over the world. They’re pouring into our country.”
Evoking Hitler rhetoric: The Anti-Defamation League and scholars have criticized Trump’s language as racist and dangerous, drawing parallels to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler’s rhetoric. The phrase “blood poisoning” was employed by Hitler in his manifesto “Mein Kampf,” where he criticized immigration and the blending of races. Hitler contended that the downfall of great cultures in the past occurred due to the extinction of the originally creative race caused by what he referred to as “blood poisoning.”
Not the first time: This is not the first time the former president has made such comments. In October, Trump made similar remarks in a 37-minute video interview with The National Pulse.
“It is a very sad thing for our country. It’s poisoning the blood of our country,” he said when asked about immigration and the Southern border. “It’s so bad, and people are coming in with disease. People are coming in with every possible thing that you could have.”
Criticizing Trump: The Biden campaign has reportedly issued a statement criticizing Trump’s remarks.
“Donald Trump channeled his role models as he parroted Adolf Hitler, praised Kim Jong Un and quoted Vladimir Putin while running for president on a promise to rule as a dictator and threaten American democracy,” the Biden campaign said. “Trump is not shying away from his plan to lock up millions of people into detention camps and continues to lie about that time when Joe Biden obliterated him by over 7 million votes three years ago.”
Christie also criticized Trump’s remarks, calling it “disgusting” on CNN’s “State of the Union.” He characterized Trump’s comments as a dog whistle targeting Americans facing economic and global stress, attributing blame to people from different backgrounds. He expressed concern about Republicans who find such statements acceptable.
Trump headed to his next rally in Reno, Nevada, on Sunday, and he plans to visit Waterloo, Iowa, on Tuesday, marking his second visit to the state within a week.