Trump distances himself from Hitler but backs anti-immigration remarks

Former president also reportedly pressured Michigan officials to not certify 2020 vote

Supporters of Donald Trump have shrugged off allegations of election interference and say the former president is being politically persecuted. Reuters
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Former US president Donald Trump fought back against claims that his recent remarks echoed sentiments of Adolf Hitler, although he still defended a crackdown on immigration into the US.

“They say that he said something about blood. He didn’t say it the way I said it, either, by the way. It’s a very different kind of a statement,” Mr Trump said on conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt’s show.

The former president also said he was not a "student" of Hitler.

Meanwhile, Mr Trump is reported to have pushed local officials not to certify the 2020 election results in Michigan, according to audio recordings cited in a US news report.

The report is the latest headache for Mr Trump, who on Tuesday was blocked by the Colorado Supreme Court from appearing on the state's primary ballot.

Similar legal efforts are under way in other states, including in Michigan, home to a large Arab-American population.

A Detroit News story on Thursday said Mr Trump, the putative Republican nominee to run for president next year, pressured two local officials not to sign the certification of vote results in their county.

In audio recordings obtained by the outlet, he allegedly told the two Republican members of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers that “we've got to fight for our country” and that “we can't let these people take our country away from us”.

Mr Trump agreed, saying: “We'll take care of that.”

The former president is due to stand trial in Washington in March on federal charges of conspiring to overturn the results of the November 2020 election won by Democrat Joe Biden.

Agencies contributed to this report

Updated: December 22, 2023, 8:45 PM