International

Trump slides in polls but rhetoric is on

Hillary Clinton holds the hand of Housing and Urban Development secretary Julian Castro after he endorsed her at a 'Latinos for Hillary' rally in San Antonio, Texas, in October.

Hillary Clinton holds the hand of Housing and Urban Development secretary Julian Castro after he endorsed her at a 'Latinos for Hillary' rally in San Antonio, Texas, in October.  

Republican candidate demands apology from Hillary Clinton; proposes wall on U.S.-Mexico border

Billionaire businessman Donald Trump continues with his characteristic rhetoric, which is a mix of diatribe against Muslims and immigrants, and contempt for opponents and media, but Texas Senator Ted Cruz is close on his heels in the race for Republican nomination for the U.S. presidential election.

Only 28 per cent Republicans support Mr. Trump now, down from his earlier position of above 40 per cent while Mr. Cruze has the support of 24 per cent. The CBS poll also shows Mr. Trump trailing the Democratic presidential aspirants Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders by a huge margin.

But all this, and the protests by a handful of youths, did not dampen Mr. Trump and his supporters in Michigan, home to the U.S automobile industry, where he addressed a gathering on Monday.

Mr. Trump reiterated the mutual admiration he and Russian President Vladimir Putin have found for each other. “He can’t stand Obama, Obama can’t stand him. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could get along?,” Mr. Trump said. “It would be so great if we could get the Russians on our side and other countries on our side and knock the hell out of ISIS (Islamic State).” Mr. Putin had last week described Mr. Trump as “brilliant”.

Demands apology

Mr. Trump also repeated his demand for an apology from Ms. Clinton for stating that the IS was using the videos of his anti-Muslim speeches for recruiting more jihadists. The Clinton campaign had already rejected the demand. Mr. Trump said he has hardly spent any money to stay on top of the race while opponent Jeb Bush has “spent millions of dollars on negative ads about me”. He added: “The person that has spent the least by far is Donald Trump. I’m $35 million under budget.” Mr. Trump has stayed in the headlines with his controversial statements, without spending money on advertisements.

On Monday, he repeated most of those. “We have to build a wall [on the U.S. border with Mexico]. It’s going to be a great wall. They’re going to call it the Trump Wall,” he said. Mr. Trump said he would take punitive action against auto manufacturer Ford for relocating their facilities from Michigan to Mexico. “I support fair trade, but we can’t be stupid traders,” he said.

Earlier on Monday, President Barack Obama had in an interview broadcast on National Public Radio said Mr. Trump was taking advantage of the anger among blue collar workers.

“Blue-collar men have had a lot of trouble in this new economy, where they are no longer getting the same bargain that they got when they were going to a factory and able to support their families on a single paycheck,” the President said.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 2:59:53 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/trump-slides-in-polls-but-rhetoric-is-on/article8018806.ece

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