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Saturday, August 13, 2016

Trump Pays a Price for Mocking a Disabled Person

In The Politics of Autism, I discuss the issue's role in presidential campaigns.   In this campaign, a number of posts have discussed Trump's support for the discredited notion that vaccines cause autism.  He also has a bad record on disability issues more generally -- including his shameful mockery of a disabled journalist. A previous post showed an ad highlighting this incident.  It has hurt his candidacy. Irin Carmon reports at NBC:
When asked in a recent Bloomberg poll what bothered them most about Donald Trump of a slew of controversies — likely voters picked one action above all others:
When the candidate mocked a reporter with a disability last November.
Democrats have made sure the public has seen and heard about Trump's extended riff over and over again. It has been played in ads created by the Clinton campaign, including a highly-circulated one involving children silently watching, and by groups working on Clinton's behalf.
Bill Clinton even said in his convention speech that his wife "never made fun of people with disabilities. She tried to empower them based on their ability."
And Clinton surrogate Tom Harkin, a prominent voice on disability policy, said recently, "Democrats believe in working together and bringing people with disabilities in to develop policy. Donald Trump? He makes fun of people with disabilities. That's a throwback to a half a century ago."