“The time is overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today,” he said during his speech at Youngstown State University in Ohio in which he outlined his plans to defeat the so-called Islamic State and fight terrorism. “I call it extreme, extreme vetting. Our country has enough problems. We don’t need more of these problems like we’ve never had before.”
Trump said his administration prevent terrorist group “sympathizers” from entering the country. He added the U.S. “must also screen out any and all hostile attitudes towards our country, our principles or (those) who believe sharia law should supplant American law.”
“Those who do not believe in our Constitution or who support bigotry or hatred will not be admitted for immigration into our country,” said Trump. “Only those who we expect to flourish in our country and to embrace a tolerant American society should be issued visas.”
Trump delivered his speech slightly more than two months after a gunman who pledged his allegiance to the so-called Islamic State killed 49 people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla.
The gunman, who was born in New York to parents from Afghanistan, was living in Fort Pierce, Fla., when he committed the massacre at the gay nightclub that was popular among Orlando’s LGBT Latino community. Officials have said there is no indication the so-called Islamic State prompted him to carry out the shooting.
“In June, 49 Americans were executed at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando,” said Trump. “It was the worst mass shooting in our history and the attack by far the worst on the LGBTQ community and I’ll tell you what, we can never, ever allow this to happen again.”
The so-called Islamic State has publicly executed dozens of men in Iraq and Syria who have been accused of sodomy. An LGBT activist in the Libyan city of Benghazi told the Washington Blade earlier this year that members of the Sunni extremist group have executed gay men in his country.
Trump in the wake of the Pulse nightclub massacre reiterated his call to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the U.S. He also said he would suspend immigration “when there is a proven history of terrorism against the United States, Europe and our allies.”
Trump said in his speech that he would temporarily ban immigrants “from some of the most dangerous and most volatile regions of the world that have a history of exporting terrorism.” He added his administration would ask the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security to identify regions in which “adequate screening (of immigrants) cannot take place.”
“There are many such regions,” said Trump. “We will stop processing visas from those areas until such time as it deemed safe to resume based on new circumstances or new procedures. The size of current immigrant flows are simply too large to perform adequate screening.”
Trump criticizes Obama, Clinton on LGBT rights abroad
Trump criticized President Obama for not condemning the oppression of gays and women in the Muslim world in a speech he gave in Cairo in 2009. The Republican presidential candidate also criticized Hillary Clinton over the millions of dollars he said the Clinton Foundation accepted from countries “where being gay is an offense punishable by prison or death.”
Promoting LGBT rights abroad has been a cornerstone of American foreign policy since Clinton delivered her “gay rights are human rights” speech in Geneva in 2011. Trump did not identify the specific countries from which he said the Clinton Foundation accepted donations.
“My administration will speak out against the oppression of women, gays and people of different beliefs,” said Trump.
Lebanese activist: Trump’s proposals ‘idiotic’
Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin in a statement that he released before Trump’s speech said he and his running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, “would fail their own test.”
Griffin noted Trump spoke at an anti-LGBT conference in Orlando last week that took place roughly 10 miles away from the Pulse nightclub. The statement also criticized the ticket’s support of North Carolina’s controversial House Bill 2 and pledge to appoint “anti-LGBTQ” justices to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Tarek Zeidan, an LGBT rights activist from Lebanon, also criticized Trump’s proposals.
“They are idiotic and designed to cater to his fan base,” Zeidan told the Washington Blade.
Zeidan described Trump as “an outspoken homophobe,” asking how his administration would “design a questionnaire about gay rights for immigration.”
“It is actions that are illegal, not opinions,” Zeidan told the Blade. “Or else half the U.S. population should be deported for being homophobic, misogynist, etc.”
Chris Barron, a gay political consultant who launched “Gays for Trump” in June, expressed his support of Trump’s proposals on his Twitter.
— Chris Barron (@ChrisRBarron) August 15, 2016
Log Cabin Republicans President Gregory T. Angelo told the Blade after Trump’s speech that “overly broad ideological litmus tests are difficult to implement.”
“But something must be done to address the threat of radical Islamic terror to the LGBT community, both abroad and at home, and Donald Trump clearly understands that,” said Angelo. “The aspect of Trump’s suggested policy focusing on the country of origin of potential immigrants and any ties to terrorist organizations they may have seems more enforceable.”
“I hope the ‘tolerance’ of the LGBT community Mr. Trump expects from immigrants abroad extends to a similar expectation of his fellow Republicans in the United States,” he added.