Republican nominee Donald Trump won over Republican primary voters by saying he would ban Muslims from entering the country for an undisclosed period of time. And now that he has the nomination, he has no intention of backing down from that promise.
"In fact, you could say it's an expansion," Trump told NBC's "Meet the Press." "I'm looking now at territory. People were so upset when I used the word Muslim. Oh, you can't use the word Muslim. Remember this. And I'm OK with that, because I'm talking territory instead of Muslim."
And even though Trump campaign surrogates have said Trump was planning to back off his earlier pledge, according to CNN, the New York billionaire wouldn't even rule out banning individuals from ally countries that have been hit by terrorist attacks, such as France and Germany.
“They have totally been" compromised by terrorism, Trump said.
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Trump's statement contradicts claims by Trump supporters, such as RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, who said the Republican nominee had backed down from a blanket ban.
"He has said he has changed, and he has put that position on the table and that is his position. It is not a religious test. It is a ban on immigration from countries that harbor or train terrorists," Priebus told CNN before the RNC convention.
But according to Trump's most recent words, they're the same as the ones he came out with in December 2015 when he caused an uproar by calling for the blanket ban on all Muslims, including refugees from war-torn Syria.
“Donald J. Trump is calling for a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what is going on,” a press release at the time said.
The press release is still on Trump's website.
When NBC asked Trump if that would violate the U.S. Constitution, the real estate mogul brushed off the idea.
“Our Constitution is great. But it doesn’t necessarily give us the right to commit suicide, OK?” Trump said. “Now, we have a religious, you know, everybody wants to be protected. And that’s great. And that’s the wonderful part of our Constitution. I view it differently.”