WASHINGTON, Sept. 26 (UPI) -- Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid on Monday denounced Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump as a "racist" in a speech from the Senate floor, criticizing GOP leaders for failing to call him out.
In blunt terms, Reid, D-Nev., also criticized members of the news media for failing to call out Trump a racist.
"Virtually every time Donald Trump says or does something discriminatory -- and that's often -- the media relies upon a catalog of buzzwords to describe his actions," Reid said Monday. "The press uses words like hateful, intolerant, bigot, extremist, prejudice, to name but a few. Yet there's always one word that many of the press conspicuously avoid: racist. They never label Trump as a racist. But he is a racist. Donald Trump is a racist."
Reid ticked off a series of Trump's most controversial remarks and policies to support his argument. He cited the real estate mogul's business history -- he and his father were sued by the Department of Justice for allegedly refusing to rent apartments to black people and marked their applications with a "c" the government said stood for "colored" -- and allegations by former employees of one of Trump's casinos that black and Hispanic workers were ordered off the casino floor when he was in the building.
Reid also cited Trump's remarks about a Mexican-American federal judge, who Trump said could not treat him fairly because of Trump's position on illegal immigration -- a comment House Speaker Paul Ryan, a Republican, labeled "the textbook definition of a racist comment."
Reid also recalled Trump's comments about undocumented Mexican immigrants, when he referred to them as "rapists" and "murderers." Reid also cited Trump's pledge to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the country due to national security concerns.
"It's time for Republicans to stop closing their eyes to Donald Trump's racism, and it's time for reporters and journalists to be honest with the American people," Reid said. "They owe America the truth. Through his words and deeds, Donald Trump is a racist."
Reid followed the speech with a tweet, saying, "Racist is not a term I throw around lightly, but Donald Trump is a racist. He says and does things with full intent to demean and denigrate."