- The Washington Times
Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry hit fellow 2016 GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump for “disrespectful language” he says Mr. Trump has used to describe Mexicans, saying the real estate mogul “knew exactly what he was doing” with the comments.

“Well, I think you have to be critical of his disrespectful language that he used,” Mr. Perry said Tuesday evening on Fox News’ “Hannity” program. “We want to talk about how to bring this country together and the solutions that we have in this country. I’ll be more than happy to have that conversation, but to paint with the broad brush that Mr. Trump did and basically say that all Mexicans were rapists and killers … that is the type of inflammatory language that doesn’t do anything at all.”

“What we need to be talking about is the real issue here, and that is the lack of commitment from Washington, D.C., to secure this border,” he said.

“He knew exactly what he was doing with those statements,” Mr. Perry said.

Mr. Trump said in his presidential announcement speech last month: “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best … they’re sending people that have lots of problems and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

Mr. Perry said he hopes Mr. Trump is really mad at Washington, D.C., for failing to secure the border.

“We agree that Washington has failed,” he said.

Mr. Perry, along with people like former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, has been one of the 2016 GOP contenders to criticize the remarks, which have led to corporations like NBC and Macy’s announcing they are cutting ties with Mr. Trump.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, meanwhile, said on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he salutes Mr. Trump for focusing on the need to address illegal immigration and that he wasn’t going to engage in the media’s game of attacking other Republicans.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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