WASHINGTON – Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace confronted senior White House adviser Stephen Miller on President Trump’s long record of “playing the race card” – and the conversation got heated.
“I’ve never called any of his tweets racist,” Wallace said on “Fox News Sunday.” “But there’s no question he’s stoking racial divisions.”
But Miller, a key immigration aide to the president, said Trump controversial comments – most recently telling four US congresswomen of color to “go back” to where they came from – are not racially motivated.
“I fundamentally disagree with the view that if you criticize somebody and they happen to be a different color skin that that makes it a racial criticism,” Miller said.
Miller claimed that comments by Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and members of the progressive squad are far worse than anything Trump has said, especially AOC’s comparison of border detention facilities to concentration camps.
“I’m a Jew,” Miller said. “As an American Jew I am profoundly outraged by the comments from Ocasio-Cortez. It is a historical smear. It is a sinful comment. It minimizes the death of 6 million of my Jewish brothers and sisters.”
Miller added: “These four congresswomen detest America as it exists as it is currently constructed. They want to tear down the structure of our country. They want it to be a socialist open borders country.”
Wallace ticked off Trump’s birtherism conspiracy against President Obama, his accusing Mexico of sending rapists and drug dealers to the US and his calls for a Muslim ban.
The host claimed Trump has been “playing the race card.”
“I couldn’t disagree more,” said Miller, who equated Trump’s birtherism to questions about Sen. John McCain’s birth certificate when he ran for president.
“No, there were never race questions about John McCain,” Wallace interjected. “There were questions about whether his was born in the Panama Canal or not.”
Miller said that Trump disagreed with the “send her back” chant that erupted at a North Carolina rally after Trump criticized Omar, a Minnesota Democrat who was born in Somalia and came to the US as a refugee.
But Wallace questioned whether Trump really was disavowing the chant.
“He let it go on for 13 seconds and it was only when the chant diminished that he started talking again,” Wallace said. “He said nothing in his tweet after the rally that indicated any concern about the chant.”
Miller said Trump supporters at the rally and behind are just “tired of being beat up, condescended to, looked down upon, talked down to by members of Congress on the left in Washington DC.”