Advertisement

The enemy within: Trump claims immigrants ‘building an army’ to attack US from inside

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has claimed without evidence that immigrants from Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere were “building an army” to attack Americans “from within,” once again using inflammatory rhetoric about migrants in the US illegally.

May 24, 2024, updated May 24, 2024
epaselect epa11295724 Former US President Donald Trump attends his trial for allegedly covering up hush money payments linked to extramarital affairs, at Manhattan Criminal Court in New York, New York, USA, 23 April 2024. Trump is facing 34 felony counts of falsifying business records related to payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels during his 2016 presidential campaign. EPA/TIMOTHY A. CLARY / POOL

epaselect epa11295724 Former US President Donald Trump attends his trial for allegedly covering up hush money payments linked to extramarital affairs, at Manhattan Criminal Court in New York, New York, USA, 23 April 2024. Trump is facing 34 felony counts of falsifying business records related to payments made to adult film star Stormy Daniels during his 2016 presidential campaign. EPA/TIMOTHY A. CLARY / POOL

 

During a rally on Thursday in the mainly Hispanic and Black neighbourhood of New York City’s South Bronx, Trump sought to portray migrants from China, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and other countries as a violent threat, even as studies show immigrants are not more likely to engage in criminality.

“Almost everyone is a male and they look like fighting age. I think they’re building an army,” Trump said to a few thousand supporters who gathered to hear him in the South Bronx’s Crotona Park.

“They want to get us from within.”

Throughout his campaign, Trump has repeatedly used incendiary language to accuse immigrants in the US illegally of fuelling violent crime, calling them “animals” responsible for “poisoning the blood” of the country. As evidence, he points to individual instances of crimes, rather than aggregate data.

“We are not going to let these people come in and take our city away from us and take our country away,” Trump said, vowing to carry out “the largest criminal deportation operation in our country’s history” if re-elected to the White House.

Trump also sought to tie record levels of migrants caught crossing the US-Mexico border illegally with the economic plight of Black and Hispanic voters, arguing, without evidence, that migrants were taking their jobs.

InQueensland in your inbox. The best local news every workday at lunch time.
By signing up, you agree to our User Agreement andPrivacy Policy & Cookie Statement. This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Trump’s decision to speak in the Bronx was in part a matter of convenience. His campaign schedule has been crimped by his trial in New York on charges he falsified business records to hide a hush money payment to a porn star. In April, he made a campaign appearance at a convenience store in Harlem, New York.

Trump is locked in a tight race with Democratic President Joe Biden ahead of the November 5 election. The Bronx rally was part of his effort to exploit Biden’s weakening support among Hispanic and Black voters.

Recent polls suggest the Trump is gaining ground with Blacks and Hispanics, who were critical to Biden’s win in 2020. Trump strategists see a chance to grab enough of their votes to make the difference in swing states in November.

In a New York Times/Siena College poll in March, Trump was selected by 23 per cent of Black and 46 per cent of Hispanic respondents in a one-on-one match-up with Biden. That is far higher than the 12 per cent of Black and 32 per cent of Hispanic voters Trump won in 2020, according to Edison Research exit polls.

Political analysts have attributed weakening support for Biden among voters of colour in part to the outsized impact of inflation on people living pay cheque to pay cheque.

Local News Matters
Advertisement
Copyright © 2024 InQueensland.
All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy