On Monday, the holiday honoring the birthday of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., one of the leading Democrats in the United States House of Representatives slammed Donald Trump as a racist, comparing Trump to the leader of the Ku Klux Klan in a speech to the civil rights organization National Action Network, NBC News reported.
Hakeem Jeffries, the third-term congressional representative from New York City who now chairs the House Democratic Caucus, told the group that Trump poses a threat to the advancements of civil rights for African-Americans and other minorities, blasting Trump as “a hater in the White House,” as quoted by the Huffington Post.
“These are challenging times in the United States of America. We have a hater in the White House: the birther in chief, the Grand Wizard of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue,” Jeffries said in the speech. “Grand Wizard” is the title used to designate a top leader of the KKK, as History.com explains.
“One of the things that we’ve learned is that while Jim Crow might be dead, he’s still got some nieces and nephews who are alive and well,” Jeffries continued. “Jim Crow” refers to a set of laws that took effect shortly after the abolition of slavery in the United States, legalizing discrimination against African-Americans and denying them of many basic human and economic rights, as the Constitutional Rights Foundation explains.
Though Trump made an unannounced visit to the King memorial in Washington D.C., the visit lasted less than two minutes, and Trump made no remarks in which he mentioned King’s name during the visit, as CBS News Radio correspondent Steven Portnoy reported via Twitter. President Trump did, however, post a written message to Twitter saying that it was “a great honor” to visit the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial alongside Vice President Pence.
In 2018, on the first King holiday since Trump’s inauguration, Trump visited his private golf course in Florida, as Salon recounted.
Other top Democrats also blasted Trump’s stance on race relations in remarks made on Monday, with Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer saying that Trump represented “a giant step back” for the progress in racial equality that was King’s life’s work.
And it was on January 6, in an interview with the CBS News program 60 Minutes, that newly-elected New York congressional representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said that she had “no question” that Trump himself was “a racist,” as the Inquisitr reported.