House Speaker Paul Ryan (R., Wis.) took a shot at presidential candidate Donald Trump on Tuesday morning for refusing to disavow the endorsement of a white supremacist.
“Today, I want to be very clear about something. If a person wants to be the nominee of the Republican Party, there can be no evasion and no games. They must reject any group or cause that is built on bigotry. This party does not prey on people’s prejudices. We appeal to their highest ideals,” Ryan said. “This is the party of Lincoln, we believe all people are created equal in the eyes of God and our government. This is fundamental. And if someone wants to be our nominee they must understand this. I hope this is the last time I need to speak out on this race.”
Ryan ended his statement by saying that Republicans in Congress would try to focus on undoing the policies put in place by President Obama over the past seven years, despite distractions from the election.
This is the second time Ryan has denounced remarks made by Trump. He had previously come out against Trump’s proposed entry ban for all Muslims.
When Trump made his rounds on Sunday shows last weekend he was asked to disavow the endorsement he received from David Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard. Trump said that he would not disavow a group he did not know about. When Trump was asked to clarify the controversy on Monday, Trump blamed a faulty earpiece and said he had never met Duke.
Republican presidential competitor Sen. Marco Rubio (R., Fl.) also took swipes at Trump for not disavowing the endorsement from Duke. Rubio pointed to comments by Trump from 2000 that mentioned Duke as evidence that Trump was aware of Duke’s connections to white supremacist causes.