Hillary Clinton should apologize for saying Islamist extremists are rooting for her GOP rival Donald Trump to win the presidential elections, the Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan said Thursday, shortly after the Democratic nominee’s comments were aired as part of an interview to Israeli TV.
“Sure, I do. But she won’t,” Ryan told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt when asked if Clinton should say sorry. “I mean, look, they’re going to call each other these kinds of names. It’s just, I don’t know, I don’t see why she thinks this is good for her, but I think it just shows, you know, you can just sort of see a person at the end of the day, what they’re like.”
Clinton was responding in an Israel Channel 2 interview to a question about why she does not use the term “war on radical Islam” favored by Trump and other conservatives.
“Bringing Islam into the definition of our enemy actually serves the purpose of the radical jihadists and there’s a lot of evidence of that,” she said, citing a Time magazine op-Ee by Matt Olsen, formerly a director of the National Counterterrorism Center under President Barack Obama.
She continued: “I found it even surprising how clear and compelling the case was, where he quoted ISIS spokespeople rooting for Donald Trump’s victory because Trump has made Islam and Muslims part of his campaign, and basically, Matt Olsen argues, that the jihadists see this as a great gift. They are saying, ‘Oh, please, Allah, make Trump president of America!”
“I’m not interested in giving aid and comfort to their evil ambitions,” she said. “I want to defeat them, I want to end their reign of terror, I don’t want them to feel as though they can be getting more recruits because of our politics.”
Clinton’s remarks also prompted an enraged rebuke from the Republican presidential nominee’s campaign. Trump’s campaign addressed the clip in its daily email to reporters, taunting Clinton for her relative paucity of news conferences.
“It’s no surprise she’s resorting to unhinged and dishonest attacks, including claiming on Israeli TV that terrorists are praying for Mr. Trump to win,” Jason Miller, a campaign spokesman, said in the email.
JTA contributed to this report