This story was reported by Deon J. Hampton, Lisa Irizarry and Valerie Bauman. It was written by Bauman.
National Republican politicians and pundits took to the airwaves Sunday to discuss what Donald Trump’s presidency will look like and to calm the fears of those who oppose the president-elect and his rhetoric.
House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday morning that he hates that many Americans are feeling terrified post-election.
“They should not” feel that way, Ryan said. “I think people should . . . rest assured. America is a pluralistic, inclusive country. It is, it has been and it will continue to be.”
Ryan condemned reports of racist graffiti and hate crimes that have emerged across the country since Trump’s victory last week — in one instance, a swastika was painted on a community softball league’s dugout in Buffalo, along with the words: “Make America White Again.” Ryan sought to distance the GOP and the president-elect from such actions.
“That’s terrible, that’s awful” he said. “By the way, that’s not Republicans. We are the party of [former President Abraham Lincoln. People who espouse those views, they’re not Republicans and we don’t want them in our party even if they’re thinking about it. And I’m confident that Donald Trump feels the same way.”
In an appearance on Sunday’s “This Week” on ABC, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani acknowledged racially charged incidents occurring across the country, saying he felt “very bad about that.”
But Giuliani, vice chair of the Trump Presidential Transition Team, added that protesters are “exaggerating the fears of a Donald Trump presidency because they’re coming off a campaign where they’re very disappointed.”
Giuliani — who is rumored to be among those on Trump’s list of potential cabinet members — declined to comment on what White House post he would want or whether he’s aware if Trump plans to appoint him to a post.
“Whatever I want to be, I’ll discuss with the president-elect, because that’s the best way to do it, not to create more rumors,” he said. “That’s between him and me.”
On CBS News’ “Face the Nation,” former Republican House Speaker New Gingrich said it will be critical for Trump to work with Democrats during his first year in office.
“I think it’s very important that [Trump] try to have as many Democrats as possible to help him do this,” Gingrich said. “Because one of the lessons from the Obama years is if you do things that are big on a purely partisan basis, they’re not stable.”
When asked if Hillary Clinton’s win of the popular vote would influence the mandate for Republicans in Washington, Ryan pointed to the unanticipated nature of Trump’s win.
“He beat all the odds,” the House speaker said. “What I think people need to stop doing is to stop underestimating Donald Trump. A lot of us did that. I think he’s very much of the mindset that there is a need to unify this country, to heal the division of this country, but also there is a mandate and a desire and a commitment to fix the problems.”