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Read Hillary Clinton’s Speech Criticizing Donald Trump’s Muslim Ban

7 minute read

Hillary Clinton gave a blistering rebuttal to Donald Trump’s speech about the Orlando shooting and his renewed call for a ban on Muslims coming to the United States.

Speaking at a rally in Pittsburgh Tuesday, the presumptive Democratic nominee called her general election rival “temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified” to serve as president.

Here’s a transcript of the speech as given.

Donald Trump wants to be our next commander in chief.


I think we all know that that is a job that demands a calm, collected and dignified response to these kinds of events.


Instead, yesterday morning, just one day after the massacre, he went on TV and suggested that President Obama is on the side of the terrorists.

Now just think about that for a second. Even in a time of divided politics, this is way beyond anything that should be said by someone running for president of the United States.


And I have to ask, will responsible Republican leaders stand up to their presumptive nominee or will they stand by his accusation about our president?

Now I am sure they’d rather avoid that question altogether. But history will remember what we do in this moment.

What Donald Trump is saying is shameful. It is disrespectful to the people who were killed and wounded and their families.


And it is yet more evidence that he is temperamentally unfit and totally unqualified to be commander in chief.


CLINTON: Of course, he is a leader of the birther movement, which spread the lie that President Obama wasn’t born in the United States. I guess he had to be reminded Hawaii is part of the United States.


This is a man who claimed a distinguished federal judge, born and raised in Indiana, can’t do his job because of his, quote, “Mexican heritage.” I guess he has to be reminded Indiana is in the United States.


So maybe we shouldn’t be surprised. But it was one thing when he was a reality TV personality, you know, raising his arms and yelling, “You’re fired!” It is another thing altogether when he is the Republican Party’s presumptive nominee for president.

Americans, we don’t need conspiracy theories and pathological self-congratulations. We need leadership, common sense and concrete plans, because we are facing a brutal en enemy. In the Middle East, ISIS is attempting a genocide of religious and ethnic minorities. They’re slaughtering Muslims who refuse to accept their medieval ways. They are beheading civilians, including executing LGBT people, murdering Americans and Europeans, enslaving, torturing, and raping women and girls.

The barbarity we face from radical jihadists is profound. So I would like to have a worthy debate on the best way to keep our country safe. That’s what Americans deserve.

Now, I read every word of Donald Trump’s speech yesterday. And I sifted through all of the bizarre rants and the outright lies. And what I found, once you cut through the nonsense, is that his plan comes down to two things.

First, he is fixated on the words “radical Islam.” Now, I must say, I find this strange. Is Donald Trump suggesting that there are magic words that, once uttered, will stop terrorists after us? Now…


Trump as usual, is obsessed with name-calling, and from my perspective, it matters what we do, not just what we say.


In the end, it didn’t matter what we called bin Laden; it mattered that we got bin Laden.


I have clearly said that we faced terrorist enemies who use a perverted version of Islam to justify slaughtering innocent people. We have to stop them, and we will.

So if Donald suggests I won’t call this threat what it is, he hasn’t been listening. But I will not demonize and declare war on an entire religion. And…


Now that we are past the semantic debate, Donald’s going to have to come up with something better. He’s got one other idea. He wants to ban all Muslims from entering our country, and now he wants to go even further and suspend all immigration from large parts of the world.

Now, I’ve talked before about how this approach is un-American. It goes against everything we stand for as a country founded on religious freedom. But it is also dangerous.

First, we rely on partners in Muslim countries to fight terrorists. This would make it harder.

CLINTON: Second, we need to build trust in Muslim communities here at home to counter radicalization, and this would make it harder. Third, Trump’s words will be, in fact, they already are, a recruiting tool for ISIS to help them increase its ranks of people willing to do what we saw in Orlando.

And fourth, he’s turning Americans against Americans, which is exactly what ISIS wants. Leaders who have actually fought terrorists know this. General Petraeus said recently that demonizing a religious faith and its adherents will come at a great cost. Not just to our values, but to our men and women in uniform and our national security. Commissioner Bill Bratton of the New York Police Department said this kinds of talk makes his job harder. He has Muslims in his police force, he has Muslims in the community. He needs everybody working together against any potential threat.

But Donald won’t listen to any of this. Not experts like General Petraeus or Commissioner Bratton or anybody because he says he knows more about ISIS than the generals do.


It’s almost hard to even think of what to say about that claim.



But in this instance, Donald’s words are especially nonsensical because the terrorist who carried out this attack wasn’t born in Afghanistan, as Donald Trump said yesterday. He was born in Queens, New York just like Donald was himself.


So Muslim bans and immigration reforms would not have stopped him. It would not have saved a single life in Orlando. And those aren’t the only two ideas Donald Trump put forward yesterday for how to fight ISIS. Beyond that, he said a lot of false things, including about me. He said I’ll abolish the Second Amendment. Well, that’s wrong. He said I’ll let a flood of refugees into our country without any screening. That’s also wrong.

These are demonstrably lies, but he feels compelled to tell them because he has to distract us from the fact he has nothing substantive to say for himself. (APPLAUSE)

Now, much of the rest of his speech was spent denigrating not just the president, but the efforts of all the brave American service members, law enforcement agents, intelligence officers, diplomats and others who have worked so hard to keep our country safe. Donald says our military is a disaster and the world is laughing at us; wrong again.

Since 9/11, America has done a great deal at home and abroad to stop terrorists. Thousands of Americans have fought and died. We have worked intensively with our allies, engaged in fierce and vital debates here at home about how far our government should go in monitoring threats. We have vastly increased security measures at airports, train stations, power plants and many other places. And the American people, we have all become more vigilant, even while we have carried on living our lives as normally as possible.

It has been a long and difficult effort. We’ve had successes and we’ve also had failures. But one thing’s for sure. The fight against terrorism has never been simple and we need a commander-in-chief who’s up to these challenges, who can grapple with them in all their complexity, some one with real plans and real solutions that actually address the problems we face.

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