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Ryan Blasts Trump for Courting Endorsements from Bigots: GOP ‘Does Not Prey on People’s Prejudices’

Once again, House Speaker Paul Ryan used his weekly presser as an occasion to blast Donald Trump — the Republican frontrunner, who, Ryan claimed, had betrayed the values of said party.

Speaking on Super Tuesday, when polls show Trump is positioned for a massive victory, Ryan tacitly repudiated Trump’s evasive refusal to disavow the support of former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke. (Trump later claimed his failure to repudiate Duke in a TV interview was due to a faulty earpiece.)

Ryan lamented that instead of holding a serious debate in the run-up to the most momentous day in the primary thus far, “the conversation over the last few days has been about white supremacist groups.”

“When I see something that runs counter to who we are as a party and a country,” Ryan said, “I will speak up. So today I want to be very clear about something.” He continued:

If a person wants to be the nominee of the Republican party, there can be no evasion and no games. They must reject any group or cause that is built on bigotry. This party does not prey on people’s prejudices. We appeal to their highest ideals. This is the party of Lincoln. We believe all people are created equal in the eyes of God and our government. This is fundamental. And if someone wants to be our nominee, they must understand this. I hope this is the last time I need to speak out on this race.

Ryan previously issued statements in December condemning Trump (again, without specifically mentioning his name), after the mogul had proposed a ban on Muslims entering the U.S. “This is not conservatism,” he said at the time. What was proposed yesterday is not what this party stands for, and more importantly, it is not what this country stands for.”

Video via ABC News.

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