President Trump’s news conference turned contentious when he called a reporter’s question racist. She asked about the time he called himself a nationalist and how some made a connection to white nationalists.
WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump accused a reporter of asking a “racist” question during a testy press conference at the White House on the day after a pivotal midterm election in which the president frequently touted his support for “nationalism.”
Yamiche Alcindor, a White House correspondent for PBS NewsHour, questioned whether the president’s use of the word “nationalism” at several rallies ahead of the midterm was a dog whistle for “white nationalism,” as many of his critics have suggested.
“That’s such a racist question,” Trump said. “What you just said is so insulting to me. It’s a very terrible thing that you said.”
White House aides repeatedly expressed outrage that the president’s critics have suggested that his rhetoric may have helped create a climate for harassment of African-Americans or Latinos and the deadly shooting in a Pittsburgh synagogue last month. The president’s aides have said that Trump’s use of the word “nationalism” encapsulates his “America First” agenda of toughening border and trade policies.
“I love our country,” Trump said. “You have nationalists. You have globalists. I also love the world and don’t mind helping the world, but we have to straighten out our country first.”
Alcindor, who is black, responded to Trump on Twitter: “I’m simply asking the questions the public wants to know.”
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