Ben Carson tags onto Donald Trump's false claim, say he too saw the news coverage of thousands of American Muslims in New Jersey celebrating on 9/11.
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Trump repeated his claim both to an audience Saturday and on ABC News on Sunday, where he doubled down and insisted he saw news reports on TV showing "thousands and thousands" of (presumably) Muslims "cheering." He added, "it was well covered at the time."
False by every reliable source possible, including most recently, a reporter who covered reports of "a number of people" who "allegedly" were celebrating on rooftops, and told MSNBC that to the best of his memory there were not "thousands" and basically it didn't happen.
“We did a lot of shoe leather reporting in and around Jersey City and talked to a lot of residents and officials for the broader story. Much of that has, indeed, faded from memory,” reporter Serge Kovaleski told MSNBC today. “But I do not recall anyone saying there were thousands, or even hundreds, of people celebrating. That was not the case, as best as I can remember.”
All news reports reveal essentially the same thing: there were reports, they were checked out by police and local reporters, and they turned out to be false.
Local elected officials, including the mayor of Jersey City, say Trump's claim is false. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, however, could only usher in tepid statement that threw his own citizens under the bus.
“I don’t recall that. I don’t," Christie told a reporter today. "I can’t say that I have—it was a pretty emotional time for me because, as I’ve mentioned before, there’s family involved, there’s friends involved, and so it was a pretty harrowing time. I do not remember that. And so, it’s not something that was part of my recollection. I think if it had happened, I would remember it. But, you know, there could be things I forget, too. I don’t remember that. No.”
One might think "thousands and thousands" of Arabs in Jersey City "cheering" as the World Trade Center "was coming down" would be something they might remember.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump insists he saw it on the news, which should lead some to question his ability to remember facts, or to concede to factfinders when proven wrong. After all, what would happen if we had a president who insisted – despite all reliable evidence to the contrary – that a Middle Eastern country had weapons of mass destruction and we should go to war, allow thousands of our soldiers to be killed as a result, only to learn that in fact, there were no WMD?
Now we have another Republican presidential candidate who – again despite all reliable claims to the contrary – insists that he too saw "newsreels" of Muslims cheering in New Jersey when the Twin Towers fell to the ground on 9/11.
ABC News' Katherine Faulders asked Ben Carson today if in fact there were American Muslims cheering the towers falling on 9/11, and did he "hear about that or see that?" He replied, "Yes."
.@RealBenCarson tells me he "saw the film" of American Muslims cheering as the towers fell in New Jersey on 9/11.— Katherine Faulders (@KFaulders) November 23, 2015
Carson then says, "I saw the film of it, yeah." And he confirmed to a reporter the "newsreel" he saw was of New Jersey.
Carson then goes on, incredibly, to state, "I don't know if on the basis of that you can say all Muslims are bad people."
"I really think that would be a stretch," he added.
Here's the video:
It's odd that he now thinks it would be "a stretch," and doesn't know if "on the basis of that you can say all Muslims are bad people," because just a few days ago he compared Syrian refugees fleeing ISIS and a civil war to rabid dogs, but insisted, that doesn’t "mean that you hate all dogs by any stretch of the imagination."
Image: Screenshot via ABC News