Hillary Clinton: Trump Thinks 'American Exceptionalism' Is Insulting to The Rest Of The World

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At a speech Wednesday to the American Legion convention in Cincinnati, Ohio, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton slammed her opponent Donald Trump for not believing in 'American excpetionalism.'

"When Vladimir Putin --of all people-- criticized American exceptionalism, my opponent agreed with him," Clinton said about her GOP rival.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in 2013: "I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is 'what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.' ... It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation."

Appearing with Fox News Channel's Greta van Susteren at the time, Trump said he agreed with Putin: "If you're in Russia, you don't want to hear that America is exceptional. And if you're in many other countries, whether it's Germany or other places, you don't want to hear about American exceptionalism, because you think you're exceptional. So I can see that being very insulting to the world... Other nations and other countries don't want hear about American exceptionalism. They're insulted by it. And that's what Putin was saying."

"My opponent misses something important. When we say America is exceptional, it doesn't mean that people from other places don't feel deep national pride, just like we do. It means that we recognize America's unique and unparelleled ability to be a force for peace and progress, a champion for freedom and opportunity," Clinton said. "Maybe you don't want to hear it, but that doesn't mean it is not true."

"Because when America fails to lead, we leave a vacuum. That either causes chaos, or other countries or networks rush in to fill the void," she added.

Transcript:

HILLARY CLINTON: Donald Trump has said very clearly that he thinks 'American Exceptionalism' is insuting to the rest of the world.

In fact, when Vladimir Putin --of all people-- criticized American exceptionalism, my opponent agreed with him, saying, I quote: "If you're in Russia, you don't want to hear that America is exceptional."

Well maybe you don't want to hear it, but that doesn't mean it is not true.

My opponent misses something important. When we say America is exceptional, it doesn't mean that people from other places don't feel deep national pride, just like we do. It means that we recognize America's unique and unparelleled ability to be a force for peace and progress, a champion for freedom and opportunity.

Our power comes with a responsibility to lead humbly, thoughtfuly and with a fierce commitment to our values. Because when America fails to lead, we leave a vacuum. That either causes chaos, or other countries or networks rush in to fill the void.


Clinton also refers to this interview with the Texas Patriots' PAC from April 2015, in which Trump said about American exceptionalism: "I don’t like the term. I’ll be honest with you. People say, ‘Oh he’s not patriotic.’ Look, if I’m a Russian, or I’m a German, or I’m a person we do business with, why, you know, I don’t think it’s a very nice term. We’re exceptional; you’re not. First of all, Germany is eating our lunch. So they say, ‘Why are you exceptional? We’re doing a lot better than you.’ I never liked the term."

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