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Updated at 11:10 AM Wednesday, Dec. 9
The mayor of Philadelphia has called the front-running Republican Presidential candidate an asshole.
The comment came at the tail end of a press conference, a day after a severed pig’s head was found outside the Al Aqsa Mosque on Germantown Avenue. It featured comments from outgoing Mayor Michael Nutter, Mayor-elect Jim Kenney, Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey and a group of interfaith representatives: Christian, Jewish and Muslim alike. The Al Aqsa imam even recited a line from the Quran.
But eventually, of course, Donald Trump came up. Trump, scheduled to speak at a GOP fundraiser Friday during the Pennsylvania Society weekend in New York City, memorably called for a ban on all Muslims entering the United States yesterday. That, combined with the severed pig’s head incident, was, in Nutter’s words, a “toxic combination.”
Then, after saying Trump was a threat to the security of the US, practicing a type of “fearmongering we have not seen since the 1930s and ’40s,” following the “playbook of Hitler” and attempting to “radicalize Americans against Muslims,” the mayor dropped the A-bomb.
“He’s an asshole. How can I take seriously foreign policy from someone like that?” Nutter asked. Then, almost immediately, perhaps conscious of speaking in front of roughly 40 religious leaders, priests and an imam: “I apologize.”
Update: Donald Trump has seen the insult, and responded in kind.
Nutter also called on Pennsylvania Republicans to disinvite Trump from the fund-raiser, saying having a “reality star” and a “cartoon character” as a candidate was one thing, but that having real people take Trump’s ideas seriously was a concern.
Ramsey said police are analyzing security video footage of the pickup truck that left the pig’s head in an attempt to determine a license plate number, and that police are paying special attention to mosques in the city. Imams have been given phone numbers for district captains, in an effort to ease communications, Ramsey said.
Kenney, for his part, stressed that America was a nation of immigrants, and that immigrants, once they arrive, should know “once they get here, we are going to protect them. We stand with them.