'I Am the Least Anti-Semitic Person You've Ever Seen in Your Entire Life'
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President Donald Trump for the second day in a row refused to address issues of anti-Semitism in America. On Wednesday at a press conference with the Prime Minister of Israel, was asked about the "sharp rise" in anti-Semitic attacks in the U.S., and about his administration "playing with xenophobia" and "racist tones."
Trump responded by talking about his election numbers. Then saying he will stop crime in America. Then talking about his Jewish daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren.
He never mentioned anti-Semitism, much less condemned it.
During a wild press conference Thursday afternoon, Trump was asked by a reporter how the Trump administration is going to address anti-Semitic attacks, referring to reports about dozens of bomb threats against Jewish businesses, schools, and day care centers in recent weeks since he took office.
As the reporter was explaining the issue, Trump stuck out his hand, saying, "He said he was going to ask a very simple, easy question."
"It's not," the president continued. "It's not a fair question."
He then told the reporter to "sit down," before he was even finished asking the question. "I understand the rest of your question."
Here's how the President of the United States chose to answer a question from a reporter concerned about terrorism against the Jewish community and looking for help from the government to combat it.
Trump, as he always does, took the question as a personal attack.
"Number one, I am the least anti-Semitic person you've ever met in your life," Trump said. "Number two. Racism. The least racist person."
"We did very well, relative to other people, running as a Republican – " Trump said, before the reporter tried to explain his question again. Trump interjected: "Quiet. Quiet. Quiet," he directed.
And then, the President told all the reporters – dozens and dozens – in the room, the reporter lied.
"See, he lied about – he was going to get up and ask a very straight, simple question. So, you know. Welcome to the world of the media. But let me just tell you something. I hate the charge. I find it repulsive. I hate even the question," Trump continued, before telling the reporter he had just asked "a very insulting question."
He never answered the actual question.
Trump, after not answering yesterday, is asked again about a sharp rise in anti-Semitic incidents and what he'll do about it— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) February 16, 2017
He did not say pic.twitter.com/tsaifw7qg2
Here's what CNN's religion reporter had to say:
Three times in two days Donald Trump has been asked to condemn anti-Semitism. Three times he has declined to.— Daniel Burke (@BurkeCNN) February 16, 2017
Some more responses via Twitter:
That image of @realdonaldtrump shouting down a Haredi Jewish reporter as a liar for calling him an anti-Semite, when he didn't...oy— (((Ron Kampeas))) (@kampeas) February 16, 2017
Trump to Jewish reporter asking about rise in anti-Semitism & bomb threats: "I hate even the question....a very insulting question."— Garance Franke-Ruta (@thegarance) February 16, 2017
Called the jewish reporter a liar for asking about anti semitic attacks, then told everyone to shut up, then said he had a jewish friend.— Jamie Kilstein (@jamiekilstein) February 16, 2017
HOLY SHIT - Jewish reporter asks about anti-Semitic attacks around the country and what will be done, &Trump yells at him to sit down. Wow.— Eric Schmeltzer (@JustSchmeltzer) February 16, 2017
Repugnant: Trump just shouted down a reporter who was trying to ask about bomb threats against Jewish community centers.— Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) February 16, 2017
Trump says a question from a reporter for a Jewish publication about rising anti-Semitism is "not a fair question."— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) February 16, 2017