(National Sentinel)Â Flashback: Throughout his bid for the presidency and beyond, Donald J. Trump has endured calls of “bigot” and “racist” over his ‘America first’ priorities and policies.
But there was a time not so long ago when leaders of the black community were praising him for a “lifetime of service” to them and other minorities.
“I want to express thanks to you, Donald Trump, for being with us tonight,” Rainbow Coalition leader Jesse Jackson said at an event in January 1998 that was captured live at the time by C-SPAN2.
“We need your building skills, your gusto, your rent package for people on Wall Street who represent diversity, and, we thank you for coming tonight,” he said, sharing a laugh with Trump. “Let’s give Donald Trump a big hand.”
At another event, Jackson also praised Trump, calling him a “friend.”
“I now want to bring forth a friend who has…well, he is deceptive in that his social style is of such one can miss his seriousness and his commitment,” said Jackson at an event commemorating his Wall Street Project, adding: “But his success is beyond argument.”
“When we opened this Wall Street Project and talked about it, he gave us space at 40 Wall Street which was to make a statement about our having a presence there,” said Jackson. “And beyond that, in terms of reaching out, and being inclusive, he’s done that too.”
Jackson also said Trump “created a comfort zone for many people” when the civil rights leader ran for the presidency in 1984 and 1988. He also credited Trump for attending minority business meetings in New York, in order to lend assistance to various causes being pursued.
“He has the sense of the curious, and the will and risk to make things better,” Jackson said. “And so, aside from all his style and his pizzazz, he’s a serious person who’s an effective builder of buildings and builder of people.”
At the same event, Trump spoke about numerous building projects he was working on and had completed where many of the construction workers were minorities.
“I’m very proud of that,” he said. “It’s close to 25 percent and I think the number’s going up.
“There are no better builders than we have in New York, and a big percentage of them are black and minority folks,” he added.
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