Trump Again Invokes ‘Blood Bath’ and Dehumanizes Migrants in Border Remarks

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Former President Donald J. Trump again cast President Biden’s immigration record in violent and ominous terms on Tuesday, accusing him of creating a “border blood bath” and once more using dehumanizing language to describe some migrants entering the country illegally.

In a speech in Grand Rapids, Mich., Mr. Trump, flanked by law enforcement officers, reiterated his baseless claim that other countries were sending “prisoners, murderers, drug dealers, mental patients and terrorists, the worst they have” to the United States. Immigration officials have said that most of those crossing the border are members of vulnerable families escaping poverty and violence.

Mr. Trump also used his speech, which lasted roughly 45 minutes, to defend his use of dehumanizing language to refer to immigrants accused of crimes. “Democrats said please don’t call them ‘animals,’” Mr. Trump said. “I said no, they’re not humans, they’re animals.”

Mr. Trump drew attention last month when, while discussing the U.S. auto industry, he predicted a “blood bath for the country” should he lose in November. After critics accused him of stoking violence, Mr. Trump and his allies pointed back to Mr. Biden, insisting he was responsible for a “blood bath” because of his immigration policies.

The former president has repeatedly criticized Mr. Biden, accusing him of maintaining lax border security that he blames for violent crime, though available data does not support the idea that migrants are contributing to increases in crime.

Mr. Trump’s use of “blood bath” comes as his campaign appears to be trying to turn it into a catchphrase, essentially trolling his critics and shifting the focus to Mr. Biden. On Tuesday, the Republican National Committee, which the Trump campaign now effectively controls, launched a website, BidenBloodbath.com, that mirrors Mr. Trump’s argument that Mr. Biden is responsible for an “invasion” at the United States’ border with Mexico. The site highlights a number of violent crimes in which undocumented immigrants have been accused.

But Mr. Trump’s remarks in Michigan demonstrated how the former president has tried to stoke fears around immigration and border security in the 2024 election, a tactic he used effectively in 2016. Republicans have been eager to keep the issue at the top of voters’ minds in a bid to chip away at Mr. Biden’s support.

Reid J. Epstein contributed reporting from Washington.

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