Clinton: Trump’s ‘biggest problem’ is his ignorance
Democrats are trying to turn the presidential election into a referendum on Donald Trump’s handling of national security, while the president’s biggest political problem is his own ignorance.
Trump has repeatedly said that he will not accept a deal to defeat ISIS in Syria if the U.S. is to stay in the deal, which he says he cannot accept.
But Democrats on Wednesday blasted the Republican nominee for his repeated claims that the Syrian government is responsible for a chemical attack in the town of Khan Sheikhoun that killed more than 80 people and that President Barack Obama ordered a strike against the Syrian military that killed dozens of civilians.
“He has a big problem,” Rep. Nydia Velázquez (D-N.Y.) said in an interview with ABC News.
“The president’s been on the wrong side of this war for a long time.
He’s the one who made it worse.”
Trump’s lack of knowledge about Syria’s chemical weapons is one of the biggest problems he faces, Velásquez said.
“He’s never been in this war,” Velárquez said, “and so when you see him talking about Syria, when he says, ‘Oh, we’ve got the big problem, the big war,’ that’s really the problem.
He has a problem with this.”
Trump has been vocal about the need to get rid of Assad, but he has refused to say if he will be willing to go to war against him.
The president’s campaign chairman, Kellyanne Conway, said Wednesday that he would only commit to getting rid of the Assad regime if the international community would stop “killing innocents” in Syria.
Trump has said he would be willing “to do whatever it takes” to get the Assad government to “stop killing innocent people.”
The Clinton campaign also has slammed Trump for saying in a campaign rally in Ohio that he “could have gotten a lot of support” from a “very, very smart man” if he had “kept the Syrian chemical weapons out of Syria” and “kept them in the country.”
Trump’s comments have raised questions about whether he would have received a lot more support from someone who could be considered “a very, very intelligent man,” said Jennifer Palmieri, the campaign manager for Clinton.
Clinton on Thursday said Trump’s rhetoric about the Syria deal is a reflection of the president being “an ignoramus.”
“There is a disconnect there,” Clinton said.
“He said, ‘Well, if we keep our chemical weapons in Syria, we could have gotten some support.
But we didn’t do it.’
Well, he didn’t.
He said, maybe I would have gotten it, but I don’t know.
He didn’t have a clue what we were talking about.”
The Democratic nominee also criticized Trump’s repeated statements that the president was not “smart enough” to be commander in chief.
Clinton’s comments were at odds with what Trump said last week when he said that Obama had “totally screwed up” the situation in Syria and that Trump was the one with the solution.
The New York businessman said Obama has “lost the plot” and that “this is the worst thing that has ever happened in our history.”
Trump later apologized for his comment and said that “I was wrong.”
Clinton, however, said that Trump’s lackadaisical approach to national security is not new.
“It is not something that I am surprised by,” she said.
But Clinton said that when the president fails to act, the nation is “at the mercy of the military industrial complex and the private military-security complex that has been feeding off of our wars for a very long time.”
“We’re not talking about this in a vacuum.
We’re talking about it because of this president’s reckless ignorance, and I think that’s dangerous,” she added.