WATCH: Speaker Ryan Slams Trump For ‘Racism,’ Still Backs Him For President

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-WI) spoke out again on Donald Trump’s attacks on the judge overseeing the Trump University case. In a press conference, when asked about Trump, Ryan said his claim that the judge should be removed from the proceedings because of “Hispanic heritage” was the “textbook definition of racism” and “indefensible.” Ryan continued, noting, “I do absolutely disavow those comments.”

Despite the harsh condemnation, however, Ryan would not rescind his endorsement of Trump for President of the United States. He added, “But do I believe Hillary Clinton is the answer? No, I do not.”

The unprecedented rebuke of the Republican Party’s presidential nominee by the highest-ranked Republican official in the country would seem to be nearly worthless, if he still supports the candidate anyways.

Even more striking, Ryan made his remarks as he stood in front of a largely African-American crowd, as he was announcing a conservative anti-poverty campaign. Ryan has often used publicity stunts to make Republicans appear more compassionate, while advocating for a legislative agenda that would cut many of the major provisions of the social safety net – welfare, social security, and the like – put in place and shored up by progressives and Democrats.

Republicans have been pummeled on Trump’s decision to racially attack Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel. Nearly every Democrat of national significance – including Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders – has blasted him over it. Republicans in the House and Senate have condemned the attack, but almost all of those have said like Ryan that they will still back Trump for the presidency.

Actor and former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a tweet in defense of Curiel, writing, “Judge Curiel is an American hero who stood up to the Mexican cartels. I was proud to appoint him when I was Gov.”

The racist episode is another black eye for the Republican Party as it attempts to make itself more appealing to Latino voters, after they overwhelmingly backed President Obama in the last two elections.


Featured image via Twitter