May 23, 2016

THERE'S A LOT OF APOLOGIZING FOR THE PARTY GOING AROUND:

Dying GOP Senator Apologizes to Muslims for Donald Trump (Tim Mak, 5/18/16, Daily Beast)

Between the hectic helter-skelter of nurses, doctors, and well wishes from a long-cultivated community of friends and former aides, Bennett faced a quiet moment with his son Jim and his wife Joyce.

It was not a moment for self-pity.

Instead, with a slight slurring in his words, Bennett drew them close to express a dying wish: "Are there any Muslims in the hospital?" he asked.
"I'd love to go up to every single one of them to thank them for being in this country, and apologize to them on behalf of the Republican Party for Donald Trump," Bennett told his wife and son, both of whom relayed this story to The Daily Beast. [...]

Trump's proposal to ban Muslim immigrants from America had outraged the former senator, his wife Joyce said, triggering his instincts to do what he could on a personal level. They ultimately did not canvass the hospital, but Bennett had already made an effort in his last months of life.

As they traveled from Washington to Utah for Christmas break, Bennett approached a woman wearing a hijab in the airport.

"He would go to people with the hijab [on] and tell them he was glad they were in America, and they were welcome here," his wife said. "He wanted to apologize on behalf of the Republican Party."

"He was astonished and aghast that Donald Trump had the staying power that he had... He had absolutely no respect for Donald Trump, and I think got angry and frustrated when it became clear that the party wasn't going to steer clear of Trumpism," his son relayed.

Bennett's Mormon faith also played into his beliefs on Trump and Muslims: the billionaire's proposal to ban Muslims prompted the LDS Church to issue a statement in support of religious freedom, quoting its founder saying he would "die in defending the rights... of any denomination who may be unpopular and too weak to defend themselves."

"That was something my father felt very keenly--recognizing the parallel between the Mormon experience and the Muslim experience. [He] wanted to see these people treated with kindness, and not ostracized," Jim Bennett said.

Posted by at May 23, 2016 3:25 PM

  

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