Donald Trump pauses while speaking during a campaign event on veterans reform in Virginia on July 11, 2016.
Bloomberg—Bloomberg via Getty Images
July 12, 2016 8:09 PM EDT

Donald Trump has declined an invitation to speak at the upcoming NAACP Annual Convention in Ohio, the leader of the civil rights group said Tuesday. Both Trump and Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton were invited.

NAACP President Cornell William Brooks told CNN on Tuesday that the presumptive GOP presidential nominee will not be present at this weekend’s event due to an apparent scheduling conflict. Instead, Clinton will attend and give a speech.

“Mr. Trump has declined our invitation, so we will hear from Sec. Clinton,” Brooks said. “Namely, the explanation given was that (the Republicans) are holding their convention at the same time. We are, of course, in Cincinnati, they are in Cleveland. We were hoping he would make the short trip from Cleveland to Cincinnati.”

Trump’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday.

Brooks told CNN it was a missed opportunity for Trump to “speak to the nation’s most critical issues at a critical hour in this country.”

“You can’t run for president and not talk about police misconduct and police brutality,” he said. “You can’t run for president and not talk about this country’s civil rights agenda, so this is an important moment and our convention really will be an opportunity for anyone running for president to provide a window into not only their policies, but into their heart and character as a candidate.”

[CNN]

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