Presumptive Republican presidential candidate Donald J. Trump has urged a “total and complete shutdown” of US borders to Muslims. In his defense, he made that statement in response to the San Bernardino shooting last year, as a means of attracting enormous media attention to himself. “Until we are able to determine and understand this problem and the dangerous threat it poses, our country cannot be the victims of horrendous attacks by people that believe only in Jihad, and have no sense of reason or respect for human life,” Trump said and America listened, even though the candidate failed to explain what “understanding this problem” actually means. Was he calling for a blue ribbon commission to examine Muslim immigration to the US? Was he envisioning a profiling system that would help law enforcement officials determine how dangerous any given olive-skinned person might be? Is Islam per se the problem — despite the largely successful integration of millions of Muslims in American society, quite unlike their situation in western Europe?

For all these obvious reasons, that rabble rousing statement now appears to be causing Trump more trouble than electoral gains, and so, in typical Trump fashion, he is ready to take some of it back. It began after the strong victory of London’s new Muslim mayor Sadiq Khan, the son of a London bus driver, who defeated a billionaire with Jewish family roots who is married to a Rothschild. On Monday Trump said he was “happy” that Khan had won, adding that Khan was just the kind of Muslim for whom he’d put aside his ban.

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“There will always be exceptions,” Trump told the NY Times when asked about letting the new mayor visit the US. “I think it’s a very good thing, and I hope he does a very good job because frankly that would be very, very good.”

Khan for his part told Time Magazine he plans to visit the US “before January in case Donald Trump wins,” adding, “If Donald Trump becomes the president I’ll be stopped from going there by virtue of my faith, which means I can’t engage with American mayors and swap ideas.”

Khan is familiar with the work of some US mayors. “I think Bill de Blasio is doing interesting housing stuff in New York, Rahm Emanuel is doing interesting stuff with the infrastructure bank in Chicago,” he told Time. “I want to go to America to meet with and engage with American mayors.”

So, for now, it’s a stalemate, where Trump would let the mayor of London in, but we don’t know whether that goes for the mayor’s family and entourage as well, because some of them could certainly turn out to be Muslim; and on the other side, Mayor Khan would never allow Trump to score points for letting one exceptional Muslim in because he does a very, very good job.

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