Republicans should respect, not trash, Donald Trump, despite the billionaire developer's controversial remarks on Mexican immigrants and his patented lack of political correctness, Bill Kristol, founder and editor of The Weekly Standard, tells Newsmax TV.
"I'm not a Trump fan, I don't think he should be the Republican nominee, but it's ridiculous," Kristol said Tuesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show."
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"It's very, very foolish if the Republican establishment or the Republican candidates treat him with disdain instead of saying, you know what, good to have more voices, good to have some unconventional voices in the race."
Some political pundits have charged that Trump's comparison of some immigrants crossing the Mexican border to rapists and drug pushers is not unlike former Rep. Todd Akin's foot-in-mouth remark that women who are victims of "legitimate rape" can't get pregnant.
And a number of prominent Republicans, including some of those also seeking the GOP presidential nomination, have made such charges.
"But, so far, Trump is the opposite of Akin," Kristol said. "Akin was an established congressman who made an idiot of himself. Trump is an outsider who was saying some things that the establishment doesn't want to hear, that is resonating with voters."
"His most controversial thing was, obviously, the statement about some of the immigrants, illegal immigrants from Mexico, which was crudely stated … and I certainly would join in saying he shouldn't have said it."
Kristol added that lawmakers should be concerned about crimes committed by illegal immigrants and about whether the federal policies in place are working to either return them to Mexico or keep them behind bars.
"The idea that that's going to be an embarrassment to the Republican Party … when President [Barack] Obama and his administration have purposefully cut back on the deportations and the tolerated sanctuary cities and so forth — I don't think Trump hurts the Republican Party in that respect," he said.
Kristol believes Sen. Bernie Sanders, the Vermont Independent challenging Hillary Clinton for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination, is more of a problem for the Democrats than Trump is for the Republicans.
Sanders has come under fire in recent weeks for one essay, written in the 1970s, in which he writes of women having rape fantasies and another, in which he said cervical cancer could be caused by a lack of orgasms, among other things.
"It is not that unlike Todd Akin, right, in terms of being sort of the same subject matter, you might say, and of course Akin was disgraced and every Republican had to distance themselves …" Kristol said.
"[Sanders] was the flaky left-winger, it seems, like 40, 45 years ago. Now he's a much more orthodox sort of Marxist, you know, social Democrat type. But look, he's going to cause trouble for Hillary."
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