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Tim Kaine: Trump's Racism Started Long Before Campaign

During a summit hosted by the National Urban League, Democratic vice presidential candidate Tim Kaine claimed Trump has a history of racism.

Kaine spoke at a "Save Our Cities" event hosted by The National Urban League, which is one of the largest national advocacy organizations for African Americans, according to The Associated Press. The event was part of a four-day conference that included workshops and lectures on poverty, housing, education and voting rights.

The summit, which took place in downtown Baltimore, Maryland, invited representatives from the Hillary Clinton and Trump campaigns. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump declined to speak, possibly because the city is not electorally competitive. 

Kaine took advantage of Trump's absence by criticizing his history with the African-American community.

"Around the time my father-in-law desegregated Virginia’s schools, the Justice Department had filed suit after Donald Trump and his father were refusing to rent apartments to African-Americans," Kaine said on Aug. 4, according to POLITICO. "It was one of the largest federal cases of its kind at the time."

Trump did not respond as to why he chose not to attend the event, but a spokeswoman said the lawsuit Kaine mentioned was "ultimately settled without any finding of liability and without any admission of wrongdoing whatsoever."

In a March interview with The Washington Post, Trump claimed to understand the dire situation in many of the nation's inner cities.

"[If] you look at unemployment for black youth in this country, African American youth, [it] is 58-59 percent," he said at the time. "It’s unthinkable ... I would create [jobs] in the inner cities, which is what I really do best."

But, his failure to address the Urban League Summit seemed to speak volumes to the African American community, according to POLITICO.

"[Kaine] realizes the pain," said Democratic Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings. "He may not be able to fully feel the pain, but he realizes there’s pain. And I don’t know that Trump even realizes there’s pain with regard to the African-American community and what we’ve been through."

In his speech, Kaine additionally said that the Clinton campaign is best suited to help rebuild inner cities and fight inequality.

"If Hillary and I win this November, you’ll have not one but two people in the White House who understand the challenges of America’s cities," Kaine said. "We need your help this fall, and I’m not ashamed to ask for it."

Sources: The Associated Press via The Eagle, POLITICO, The Washington Post / Photo Credit: Alycia Monroe/ABC via Flickr

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