Despite previous comments about Muslims and immigrants which have caused many to deride Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as hateful and bigoted, the front-runner has reportedly gained increasing support from Muslim, Sikh and Hindu communities throughout the U.S.
A group consisting of Sikh and Muslim Americans held a rally to try to convince other members of their respective religions that Trump is in no way against their interests, World Religion News reports. That rally was organized under the banners of Sikh Americans for Trump and Muslim Americans for Trump.
The founders of those two groups, Jesse Singh and Sajid Tarar, met with a Trump-campaign representative in Maryland, according to the BBC.
Singh says he came to the U.S. nearly 30 years ago.
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"I don't see that America anymore," he said. "So when Trump says, 'Make America Great again,' I fully agree with him."
Tarar agreed with Trump's call for a strong vetting mechanism for refugees from Muslim countries.
"I am an American myself and I believe it should be about [putting] America first," Tarar said. "I am not in favor of anybody coming here and doing things against America."
Trump has likewise attracted the support of some Hindu groups in the U.S. The "Hindus for Trump" Facebook page has some 500 likes and features artwork of Trump as a Hindu deity.
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One post on the group's page appealed to "Trump Haters" with the following statement: "Donald Trump promises to make America Great again. It means more jobs, less warmongering, protected borders, treasury surplus and a better life for LEGAL Americans. He's going to win and you are on the wrong side of History."
Sudhir Parikh is a member of Indian-Americans for Trump 2016, a political action committee in New Jersey. He said Trump is a "doer" who would be able to negotiate with both political parties.
"He looks unstoppable," Parikh said. "Part of our community does support Hillary Clinton, but we have to support the other side too, so that our interests are protected and we have access to the Washington power."