Former President Bill Clinton told worshipers at an African-American church in California that Donald Trump’s “Make America Great Again” campaign slogan is code language for taking the country back to where it was before the struggle for civil rights.
“What’s that slogan, ‘Make America Great Again?’” the 42nd president asked the 24,000-member West Angeles Church of God In Christ without mentioning the presumptive Republican nominee by name. Clinton was campaigning for his wife just prior to the California primary on June 7.
“Now for the young people here, you’ve got to be a certain age to understand that’s a code saying,” Clinton said. “It means way more than what it sounds like. It means ‘Hey, put me in there and I will make the economy the way it was for you 40 or 50 years ago.’ In other words, America wasn’t so great for everybody 40 or 50 years ago, including the parents of a lot of people in this great congregation.”
Clinton, who jabbed previously at Trump’s slogan last month in New Jersey, also ridiculed Trump’s controversial proposal to build a wall across the southern U.S. border and make Mexico pay for it.
“Is it about the future or the past?” Clinton summarized the choice facing voters in the 2016 election. “Is it about unity or division? And what about this pesky old world out there? Are we going to wake up every day and look at it with bridges or walls? That’s the whole deal.”
A lifelong Southern Baptist, in 2008 Clinton joined former President Jimmy Carter in headlining the first Celebration of the New Baptist Covenant meeting Jan. 30-Feb. 1 in Atlanta. Carter recently announced that after a two-year hiatus focusing on local ministry partnerships, the group formed to counter Baptists’ image of being known what they are against instead of what they are for will meet again this fall.
Information about the New Baptist Covenant Summit, scheduled Sept. 14-16 in Atlanta, is available on the movement website.