On Thursday evening, Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway tweeted a photo of the candidate with his “first-class team” in the campaign “war room.”
— Kellyanne Conway (@KellyannePolls) September 2, 2016
Twitter erupted in outrage, mocking the lack of diversity in the office, with multiple users declaring that it “looks like a (ku klux) klan meeting.”
— David Voss-Hall (@DavidVossHall) September 2, 2016
— Don'tBooVote (@OFSCOTUS) September 2, 2016
“Look at all that diversity, blondes AND brunettes,” one user responded.
— Matt Shaw (@NotMattShaw) September 2, 2016
— yolanda scott (@ymscott) September 2, 2016
The New York Times reported Trump will be interviewed by Bishop Wayne T. Jackson, the black pastor of the Great Faith Ministries International church on Saturday, and that the talks will be closed to the press and public. The interview will be aired a week later, on Bishop Jackson’s religious cable channel the Impact Network.
Instead of Trump taking questions off the cuff, everything that the pastor will be asking will have been submitted in advance, and the campaign and Republican National Committee prepared an eight page draft script with responses that they have advised the candidate to give.
“It is not uncommon for a candidate to request interview questions in advance; aides to Hillary Clinton do it from time to time. But it is unusual for a campaign to go so far as to prepare a script for a candidate’s own responses, and highlights the sensitivity of Mr. Trump’s first appearance at a black church,” the Times reported.
A leaked script reveals that, if asked about his vision for black Americans, Trump is advised to stay positive and use lines such as “If we are to make America great again, we must reduce, rather than highlight, issues of race in this country,” and, “I want to make race disappear as a factor in government and governance.”
When asked what he would like to say to undecided black voters, the script suggests that he asserts that he will be a “strong partner” and boast about his poll numbers.
“If you want a strong partner in this journey, you will vote for me. I will never let you down,” the campaign suggests he says, adding, “By the way, my support is now up to 8 percent and climbing.”
Bishop Jackson responded to the Times by saying that he sees no problem with Trump receiving the questions in advance.
“We want this to be as peaceful as possible,” Jackson said. “That’s what I promised would happen. I promised that: You are coming into a place to be interviewed and we don’t want anybody to be hurt or anybody to be misused, so that’s it.”
Following the interview, Trump will be address a crowd for five minutes in a short speech. He will also visit local African-American neighborhoods with former campaign rival Ben Carson.