U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL).
(photo credit: REUTERS)
CLEVELAND – Newly minted GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump is directly responsible for stoking anti-Semitism within the Republican Party, and has demonstrated anti-Semitic tendencies himself, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, told The Jerusalem Post Wednesday.
“Look at the anti-Semitism that he has clearly demonstrated throughout his candidacy,” said Wasserman Schultz (D-Florida), when asked whether she believed anti-Semitism in the party reaches the top of its presidential ticket. “The anti-Semitism that is threaded throughout the Republican Party of late goes straight to the feet of Donald Trump.”
Wasserman Schultz commented shortly after the Republican National Committee was forced to shut down its convention live chat on Tuesday over a torrent of anti-Semitic rants.
The episode is only one of several examples of an increasingly hostile environment for Jews, Wasserman Schultz argued.
She listed several others, including Trump tweeting out a graphic image of a six-pointed star over a pile of money that accused presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton of corruption; his speech to the Republican Jewish Coalition, during which he referred to the crowd as a bunch of clever deal makers; his call for US neutrality between Israel and the Palestinians and for a reduction in foreign aid; and his delay in repudiating David Duke, “a known anti-Semite.”
He is “essentially fostering the anti-Semitic rants,” Wasserman Schultz said. “There is so much anti-Semitism in the Republican Party of today. Bullying and demeaning people is no way to run a country.”
Trump officially captured the 2016 Republican presidential nomination late on Tuesday evening, when his eldest child, 38-year-old Donald Trump Jr., announced the support of New York – their home state – during a roll-call vote at the Republican convention.
“It is my honor to be able to throw Donald Trump over the top in the delegate count tonight,” the younger Trump said, with three of the candidate’s other children at his side.
“Congratulations, Dad. We love you.”
The vote ensured that Trump had the majority of delegates – 1,237 – needed to contest the November 8 US presidential election against Clinton.
Trump won with a final total 1,725 delegates, followed by US Senator Ted Cruz of Texas with 475 delegates, Ohio Gov. John Kasich with 120 and US Sen.
Marco Rubio of Florida with 114. Three other candidates emerged with a total of 12 delegates.
Trump will accept the nomination on Thursday.
The target of withering verbal attacks during the convention, Clinton was quick to respond to the vote, tweeting: “Donald Trump just became the Republican nominee. Chip in now to make sure he never steps foot in the Oval Office.”
The Democratic National Convention convenes next week in Philadelphia.
After the presidential nominating vote, the convention by voice vote nominated 57-yearold Indiana Gov. Mike Pence as Trump’s vice presidential running mate.
Speaking to the convention for the first time since winning the nomination, Trump appeared on a video screen from New York promising to win the election in November, create jobs, strengthen the military, safeguard US borders, and “restore law and order” in the United States.
The state-by-state vote to put Trump’s name in nomination took place a day after opponents staged a failed attempt to force a vote opposing his candidacy at the start of the four-day convention, and after a speech by his wife, Melania, drew accusations of plagiarism.
A speechwriter on Wednesday took responsibility for the parts of Melania’s speech that were identical to a 2008 speech given by first lady Michelle Obama.
Meredith McIver, a staff writer for the Trump Organization holding company, said she had inserted the relevant passages into Melania Trump’s speech.
“I did not check Mrs.
Obama’s speeches,” McIver said in a statement. “This was my mistake, and I feel terrible for the chaos I have caused Melania and the Trumps, as well as to Mrs. Obama. No harm was meant.”
McIver said she offered to resign over the error, but that the Trump family rejected it.
She said Melania Trump had read passages over the phone to her from Michelle Obama’s speech at the 2008 Democratic National Convention as examples. McIver then wrote them down, and later included some of the phrasing in a draft that became Melania Trump’s speech on Monday night.