Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump today spoke to a group of Christian conservatives, telling them “no one should be judged by their race or their color.”
“Religious freedom, the right of people of faith to freely practice their faith; it is so important,” Trump said. “Freedom of any kind means no one should be judged by their race or their color and the color of their skin.”
He added, “We have a very divided nation. We are going to bring our nation together.”
Trump’s remarks at today’s Faith and Freedom Coalition “Road to Majority” conference in Washington, D.C., were a stark contrast to his recent comments about Gonzalo Curiel, a federal judge who is hearing a fraud case against the GOP candidate’s now-defunct Trump University.
Trump has questioned the U.S.-born judge’s ability to be impartial because of his Mexican heritage.
Trump, reading from teleprompters, once a rarity for the businessman, today decried presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton’s plans to allow refugees into the country. Trump asserted that Clinton wants a “500 percent increase of Syrian refugees” coming into the United States.
“She’s crooked as they come. Refuses to say the words, ‘Radical Islam,’” he added, referring to Clinton.
During the speech, protesters briefly interrupted Trump by chanting “stop hate, stop Trump. Refugees are welcome here.”
The hecklers also shouted “God hates Donald Trump,” and were quickly escorted out of the room as the New York real estate mogul continued speaking.
The conference is considered an opportunity to appeal to evangelical voters. Trump held a 59-point lead among self-identifying white protestant evangelicals against Hillary Clinton, polling at 76 percent nationally, according to the most recent ABC News-Washington Post poll.
SOURCE: ABC News – NOAH FITZGEREL, CANDACE SMITH, JOHN SANTUCCI