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Trump vs. Bloomberg, more than a Twitter battle

By Clarence Page, Tribune Content Agency on

President Donald Trump could hardly contain his glee.

"WOW, BLOOMBERG IS A TOTAL RACIST!" he tweeted in all caps to his millions of followers early Tuesday, the day of the New Hampshire presidential primary.

The tweet leaked audio from 2015 in which Michael Bloomberg, former New York mayor and current Democratic rival for Trump's job, strongly defended the city's stop-and-frisk policing policy.

Before it was quickly taken down, the clip was originally posted by a liberal blogger on Monday night, aimed at reviving outrage over the aggressive policing tactics for which Bloomberg later apologized -- as he was launching his presidential bid last fall.

In the clip he can be heard saying that "the way you get the guns out of the kids' hands is to throw them up against the walls and frisk them."

The former Republican also sounded defiant as he explained why the policy targeted minority kids in minority neighborhoods: "Because that's where all the crime is."

 

Bloomberg continued to defend stop-and-frisk after he left office in 2013. He also continued early last year to attribute a decline in the city's murder rate to the policy, though the number of murders continued to decline despite the reduction in stops.

Bloomberg? A racist? Look who's talking.

As a candidate in late 2016, Trump called for a nationwide stop-and-frisk policy during an interview with Fox News, saying the program "worked very well" for New York City.

"I think Chicago needs stop and frisk," he said in a "Fox & Friends" interview, although the more he rambled on about how "Chicago needs stop and frisk" and "tough law and order," the more it was apparent to me that he really didn't know much about the subject.

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(c) 2020 CLARENCE PAGE DISTRIBUTED BY TRIBUNE MEDIA SERVICES, INC.
 

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