Speaker of the House Paul Ryan: “If a person” — Donald Trump — “wants to be the nominee of the Republican party, there can be no evasion and no games. They must reject any group or cause this is built on bigotry” — a reference to former KKK bigwig David Duke, who has endorsed Trump. “This party does not prey on people’s prejudices,” Ryan went on. “We appeal to their highest ideals. This is the party of Lincoln. We believe all people are created equal in the eyes of God, and our government. This is fundamental. And if someone wants to be our nominee, they must understand this.”
Translation: Since the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act and particularly the rise of civil unrest in the late ’60s and early ’70s, the Republican party has been a haven for rich, alarmed or under-educated whites who feel threatened by liberal social legislation, programs and attitudes that have afforded a fair shot to people of color looking to get ahead. Republican leaders disavow blatant racism, of course, but we all know they’ve been speaking in code for decades about social and racial issues, and that they are, in fact, the party of racial dog-whistle sentiments.