Hudson: Only one way to respond to Gold Star families

Published 11:14 am Wednesday, August 3, 2016

By Josh Bergeron

SALISBURY — Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump hasn’t responded appropriately to statements from a family whose son was killed in Iraq while serving in the Army, according to Rep. Richard Hudson.

Through social media and in a TV news interview, Trump responded to a speech from a Gold Star family by dishing out his own criticism. Gold Star families are immediate relatives of members of the military killed in action. Politicians on both sides of the political aisle have condemned Trump’s remarks.

In a speech at the Democratic National Convention, Khizir Khan, the father of a soldier who died in Iraq,  questioned whether Trump had read the Constitution, offered to lend Trump his copy and said the New York businessman had “sacrificed nothing and no one.”

Hudson, who has endorsed Trump, didn’t directly address Khan’s or Trump’s comments when asked about the controversy by the Salisbury Post. Instead, Hudson, a Republican who represents most of Rowan in Congress, said there’s only one way to address the remarks.

“Our Gold Star families deserve our gratitude and respect,” Hudson said in an emailed statement. “The only appropriate response to the Khan family is, ‘God bless you. I can’t imagine your pain and I am humbled by your sacrifice. Your son is a hero.'”

Instead, Trump told ABC News in a TV interview that he has made a lot of sacrifices and questioned if Khan’s wife wasn’t allowed to speak during the convention because of her religion. Trump has also tweeted negative remarks, hasn’t apologized for any remarks and has continued criticizing the family.

Hudson’s general election opponent Thomas Mills, a Democrat from Carrboro, pounced on Trump’s remarks, citing them as a reason for Hudson to revoke his Trump endorsement. Hudson response to a Salisbury Post inquiry didn’t say whether his endorsement would change because of Trump’s remarks.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.