Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump insists a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States” has “no relationship” to Japanese internment during World War II.
Appearing on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Tuesday, Bloomberg’s Mark Halperin pushed Trump for an answer if “Japanese internment camps go against American values.” (RELATED: After Contentious Interview, Scarborough Praises Trump For Sticking It Out)
Trump explained, “We’re not talking about internment. This is a whole different thing.”
“This is a whole different thing,” suggested Trump. “You’re asking me a different question. Don’t ask me that question. What about — OK, no let me ask you this, Mark. What about Franklin Roosevelt’s presidential proclamations 2525, 2526, and 2527? Take a look at them, Mark.”
Halperin kept pushing for an answer and Trump said, “I don’t want to respond to it. You know why? That’s not what we’re doing. You’re asking me a different question. That’s not what we’re doing. … That’s an entirely different question. Has no relationship to what I’m talking about.”
Trump was also asked by Halperin about former Vice President Dick Cheney’s insistence that Trump’s position on Muslim immigration “goes against everything we stand for and believe in.”
(RELATED: Cheney: Trump’s Muslim Immigration Ban ‘Goes Against Everything We Stand For’)
“What do you think he means by and do you have any sympathy for that point of view,” Halperin asked.
Trump claimed, “Well I have sympathy for everything. I understand all points of view, I’m just saying that I know how to get things done and we’re not getting it done. If we continue to go on the path that we’re doing — we’re losing to ISIS in the war because we have a president that doesn’t know how to fight the war. We have a president that doesn’t even know what to call the term.”
Halperin shot back, “But Mr. Trump, if you will, explain that point of view. Explain, you said you have ‘sympathy for it.’ So what do you think Dick Cheney means when he said it goes against everything we stand for and believe in, what you’re proposing?”
Trump explained, “Well, he would like to make everybody all inclusive. Now I’m not really sure. If he felt that way, maybe he wouldn’t have gotten us into that horrible war in Iraq, which by the way, I was opposed to. I was opposed to the war in Iraq. You know, people think I’m militant. I’m so militant that I’m the only one practically that you can say was opposed to the war in Iraq. There were very few of us. Because I said it would destabilize the Middle East.”
Halperin followed up, “You agree this goes against American values?” (RELATED: Graham: Trump A ‘Race-Baiting, Xenophobic, Religious Bigot’)
Trump doubled down, “Well no, because FDR did it, if you look at it. I mean, you know, they said the same thing when I said we have to do strong borders. Then they look back in 1954, Dwight Eisenhower, I like Ike, his theme was ‘I like Ike.’ Everybody liked Ike, he did it.”