Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly on Tuesday briefly confronted Donald Trump over whether he believed he lost black support because of his questions about President Barack Obama’s birthplace.
During an interview on “The O’Reilly Factor,” the host pointed out that Trump was losing significantly among non-white voters, and asked directly about whether Trump took a political hit for his public inquiry into whether Obama was born in the US.
“Do you think birther position has hurt you among African-Americans?” O’Reilly asked.
“I have no idea. I don’t talk about it anymore, Bill. Because, you know I just don’t bother talking about it,” Trump said.
Despite leading a months-long public crusade disputing the legitimacy of Obama’s birth in Hawaii, the Republican presidential nominee has refused to apologise for his questions about Obama’s birth place, insisting repeatedly that he does not want to discuss the issue.
During Tuesday’s interview, Trump claimed that O’Reilly was the “first person to bring it up in a while,” though the real-estate mogul was asked by reporters on his plane over the weekend about whether he still believed Obama was not born in the US. Though some state polls show him with zero per cent support among black voters, he also denied that black voters were turned off by his birther attacks, saying he was well-received when he visited a black church in Detroit recently.
“I don’t think so. Look, I went to Detroit — we had, it was like a lovefest. We had just a great, great, time. I was there for a long time. The bishop and his wife and the congregation — these are fantastic people,” Trump said.
Trump has attempted to reach out to minority voters over the past several weeks. During a rally in Michigan late last month, the Republican presidential nominee cited an incorrect black unemployment statistic to argue that his candidacy would be better for black voters.
“You’re living in poverty, your schools are no good, you have no jobs, 58% of your youth is unemployed,” Trump said last month during rally to a largely white audience in Michigan. “What the hell do you have to lose?”
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