President Donald Trump echoed language utilized by the suspected gunman in a set of mosque assaults in Christchurch, New Zealand, on Friday, calling immigration on the southern U.S. border an “invasion.”
The president made the feedback throughout a signing ceremony for his first official veto, rejecting a bipartisan decision terminating his nationwide emergency declaration on the U.S.-Mexico border. The president first declared a nationwide emergency final month as a way to divert funding from different areas of the federal government to construct his long-promised border wall.
Through the signing ceremony, the president expressed condolences for the victims of the assault, which left a minimum of 49 folks useless, calling the occasion an “evil killing” and a “horrible factor,” earlier than pivoting again to the border.
“Congress’ vote to disclaim the disaster on the southern border is a vote in opposition to actuality,” he stated. “It’s a super nationwide emergency. It’s a super disaster.”
He added, “Final month, greater than 76,000 unlawful migrants arrived at our border. We’re on observe for one million unlawful aliens to hurry our borders. Individuals hate the phrase ‘invasion’ however that’s what it’s. It’s an invasion of medicine and criminals and other people. You don’t have any concept who they’re.”
Trump proceeded to insist that “in lots of circumstances, they’re stone chilly criminals,” and recommended “they do a whole lot of injury in lots of circumstances,” however introduced no proof to again his claims.
In a manifesto allegedly written by the suspected New Zealand shooter, revealed on-line shortly earlier than the dual assaults on Friday, Brenton Tarrant, 28, complained of an “invasion…by nonwhites,” and used white nationalist rhetoric to recommend these of European descent had been in danger. The manifesto itself was titled “The Nice Substitute,” a reference to the supposed menace white folks face because of immigration.
The alleged gunman’s weapons had been additionally painted with white nationalist symbols and references to different white supremacist attackers.
The suspected shooter additionally praised Trump instantly, describing him “as an emblem of renewed white identification and customary objective.”
Throughout Friday’s signing ceremony, Trump was requested instantly whether or not he believed white nationalism was a menace around the globe, to which he replied, “I don’t actually. I believe it’s a small group of people who have very, very severe issues.”
“I suppose in the event you take a look at what occurred in New Zealand, maybe that’s the case,” he added. “I don’t know sufficient about it but. They’re simply studying concerning the particular person and the folks concerned. However it’s definitely a horrible factor. Horrible factor.”
In December, the Institute for Economics and Peace issued its sixth World Terrorism Index report, noting that whereas deaths related to terrorism had slowed over the previous three years, far-right political terrorism posed a rising and regarding menace.
The menace is very evident in the USA, the place the Heart for Strategic and Worldwide Research reported assaults from far-right extremists had risen over the previous decade, quadrupling between 2016 and 2017.
As ThinkProgress beforehand famous, Trump himself has pushed a number of the identical conspiracy theories talked about by the suspected gunman. In August, the president tweeted that he had instructed Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to “intently research the South Africa land and farm seizures and expropriations and the big scale killing of farmers.” The tweet was a reference to a conspiracy principle about white genocide in South Africa, just like the Nice Substitute principle, a well-liked matter of many white nationalists.