Democratic presidential candidate and California Sen. Kamala Harris said Sunday Hispanic American’s wouldn't find it “authentic” if President Donald Trump tried to reassure them in the wake of the El Paso mass shooting.
In an interview on NBC News’ “Meet The Press,” Harris said she believes Hispanics feel targeted, both by the El Paso gunman who professed hate of “Mexicans” in the country and in the wake of ICE arrests of illegal immigrants at Mississippi food plants.
“I don't think it would be authentic if he did” try to offer assurance to Hispanic Americans, she said.
“And I think people are smart enough to know that. You know, there's an old saying, ‘Judge me by my actions, not my words.’ And his actions have been to divide, to vilify, to do what is contrary to who we are as Americans, which is to say it's us versus them....He beats people down. And I will tell you, that’s the sign of a coward.”
Harris pointed to illegal immigrant roundups as a “campaign of terror” that will “flaw’ the 2020 census.
“This administration has directed [the Department of Homeland Security] to conduct these raids as part of what I believe is this administration's campaign of terror,” she said. “Which is to make whole populations of people afraid to go to work."
"You and I will both suffer if that census count is flawed" in 2020, she added. "And I'm telling you that, given the policies of this administration, that is going to be a flawed census.”
She also dismissed red flag laws as an effective gun control measure to keep firearms out of the wrong hands.
“We can do better,” she declared. “We need universal background checks … on this issue, I'm going to tell you I am prepared when elected to actually take executive action if Congress doesn’t.”
Harris said she believed Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election exposed racism as “America's Achilles heel.”
"So they decide to attack what is the strongest pillar of a democracy, which is free and open elections,” she said. “And they tried out a bunch of different things. And you know what caught heat? The issue of race. So Russia exposed America's Achilles heel."
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