Republican U.S. Sen. Richard Burr has distanced himself from GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump’s comments about the Muslim-American parents whose son died fighting in Iraq.
“There’s no place in America for this,” Burr told a Wilmington TV station Monday. “We need to thank those who commit the ultimate sacrifice, those who put on the uniform and defend this country and our ability to have elections, but I don’t think there will be anybody out there defending the statement that was made.”
During a stop in Wilmington, Burr was asked about Trump’s comments about Khizr and Ghazala Khan, the Pakistani-born parents of Army Capt. Humayun Khan, who was killed in Iraq in 2004.
At last week’s Democratic National Convention, Khizr Khan lashed out at Trump, who has in the past called for a ban on Muslim immigration. Trump has since focused on immigrants from specific countries at risk for terrorism.
“You have sacrificed nothing and no one,” Khan said. “If it was up to Donald Trump, he never would have been in America,” he said of his son.
Trump responded by saying Khan “viciously attacked” him.
“I think I’ve made a lot of sacrifices. I work very, very hard. I’ve created thousands and thousands of jobs, tens of thousands of jobs, built great structures,” Trump later said.
Trump also suggested that Ghazala Khan did not speak at the convention because of her Muslim faith. She later said she was overcome with grief.
In a statement, Burr said, “The parents and siblings of our fallen service members deserve the utmost respect – period – and the sacrifice made by their loved ones will never be forgotten.
“Captain Khan is an American hero in every sense of the term and the Khans deserve our sincerest gratitude.”
Burr has said he still supports Trump. Democrats have pounced on Republican lawmakers who have rebuked Trump’s comments but continue to support him.
“Sometimes you can’t have it both ways,” Democratic Senate candidate Deborah Ross said in a statement. “What Donald Trump said was inexcusable and Richard Burr owes North Carolina’s military families an explanation of how he can continue to support Trump as Commander in Chief after his offensive comments.”