Trump says people crossing the border bring 'very contagious disease' with them

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Former President Donald Trump asserted Wednesday that people crossing the U.S.-Mexico border are bringing contagious disease with them.

“They’re coming in as terrorists. Many, many terrorists are coming in, and people are coming in with very contagious disease,” Trump said Wednesday evening in an interview with New York radio station WABC.

“You know, like it’s all of a sudden you see there’s a run on tuberculosis. There’s a run on things that we haven’t talked about for years in this country,” he added.

Trump made similar claims in September about disease being brought in through the southern border when he said in an interview with The National Pulse that illegal immigrants are “poisoning the blood of our country.”

He repeated the claim in December at a rally in New Hampshire. “It is a very sad thing for our country. It’s poisoning the blood of our country. It’s so bad, and people are coming in with disease. People are coming in with — with every possible thing that you can have," he said.

In Wednesday's interview, Trump once again alleged that people crossing the border and coming into the U.S. are speaking unfamiliar and unknown languages.

“We have no idea who they are, where they come from,” Trump said. “We have no idea. They speak languages we don’t even know about. We have people with languages that we know nothing about. It’s crazy,” he said.

Much of the violent rhetoric about an out-of-control southern border is routine rally material for Trump, who repeatedly claims that people crossing the border are from “mental institutions” and “insane asylums.”

Trump frequently refers to the increased migration from South and Central American countries, vowing to impose stricter border regulations. Speaking Saturday at the National Rifle Association’s annual convention, Trump said that if he were the leader of a South American country, he would send criminals and prisoners to America “faster than them.”

“The ones in South America that are sending all of their criminals and their prisoners and their gangs into our country — intelligently,” Trump said. “I’d do the same thing if I was there. I’d do the same. I’d do it faster than them.”

While he has vowed to bolster and work closely with local law enforcement in border communities, Trump has remained vague about specific policy he’d use to reinforce border security. That hasn’t halted his sharp criticism of President Joe Biden’s handling of the border — a main point of attack for Trump ads and fundraising emails.

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