Donald Trump: I Would ‘Strongly Consider’ Shutting Down Mosques if Necessary

Monday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was asked if he would be willing to shut down mosques, he said that would be something he would consider.

MSNBC’s Chris Jansing asked, “Is there something that you would do here in the homeland that you think is not being done now to protect United States citizens?”

Trump replied, “Well, you’re going to have to watch and study the mosques because a lot of talk is going on at the mosques. And from what I heard in the old days, meaning a while ago, we had great surveillance going on in and around mosques in New York City, and I understand our mayor totally cut that out. He totally cut it out. I don’t know if you’ve brought that up and I’m not sure it’s a fact. But I heard that under the old regime, we had tremendous surveillance going on in and around the mosques of New York City. And that’s been totally cut out.”

In response to Trump’s remarks, co-host Joe Scarborough said, “Chris, you did a lot of reporting this weekend. I think I picked up this weekend that actually the French said they will shut down mosques.”

Jansing said  “That have radical leadership. So they are very specifically talking about once that they have, that they can determine have very specific ties –”

Scarborough said,  “That they will go in and shut down mosques?”

Jansing said,  “There’s talk about that in many places.”

That led Scarborough to ask, “Donald Trump, the French are talking about that. Is this something you would consider doing as president?”

Trump replied, “Well, I would hate to do it but it’s something that you’re going to have to strongly consider because some of the ideas and some of the hatred, the absolute hatred is coming from these areas. And, you know, New York City as an example. We had a group of people from what I understand that really knew what they were doing, that were really studying the situation and they’re not doing that anymore. Under the new mayor they are not doing that anymore and I think that’s a mistake. It’s something that many people, not me, it’s something that many people are considering and many people are going to do.”

Jansing said, “But are you concerned at all about the backlash that can create –”

Co-host Mika Brzezinski added, “That can also breed hatred.”

Jansing added,  “– and the hatred that can breed?”

Trump continued, “There is already hatred. The hatred is incredible. It’s embedded. [crosstalk] hatred is beyond belief. The hatred is greater than anybody understand. And it’s already there. It not like, what, do you think they think we’re great people? It’s already there. It’s a very, very sad situation. And I know so many people, Muslims, who are such great people, and they are being so badly tarnished by what’s happening now. It’s a shame. You can’t  –”

Scarborough said, “And you would agree, Donald — You would agree that this is just a small percentage of — these radical Muslims are a small percentage of the entire Muslim population?”

Trump added,  “Yes, but it’s a tremendous amount of horror and damage and vitriol. You look at what’s happening. This is something that has to be stopped and we have to be very strong, we have to be vigilant, and we have to be intelligence. We need to bring back our intelligence agencies, and bring them to a much higher level.”

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