For the second time in less than a month, GOP presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald TrumpMedia giants side with Bannon on request to release Jan. 6 documents Cheney warns of consequences for Trump in dealings with Jan. 6 committee Jan. 6 panel recommends contempt charges for Trump DOJ official MORE is writing off a statement many found offensive — that President Obama was the “founder” of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) — as “sarcasm.”
“ISIS is honoring President Obama,” Trump said Wednesday during a rally in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. “He’s the founder of ISIS. He founded ISIS."
“I would say the co-founder would be Crooked Hillary Clinton,” Trump added of his Democratic rival and Obama’s former secretary of State. Trump has previously referred to each as ISIS's most valuable player as well.
Trump doubled down on the claim Thursday in an interview with Hugh Hewitt, telling the radio host that "everyone's liking" the comments.
“I know what you meant. You meant that he created the vacuum. He lost the peace,” Hewitt said.
“No, I meant that he’s the founder of ISIS,” Trump replied. “He was the most valuable player. I gave him the most valuable player award."
But on Friday, Trump tweeted that he was being facetious:
Ratings challenged @CNN reports so seriously that I call President Obama (and Clinton) "the founder" of ISIS, & MVP. THEY DON'T GET SARCASM?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 12, 2016
In July, Trump came under fire for saying he hopes Russian hackers find Clinton's 30,000 missing emails from her private server, statements he later dismissed as "sarcastic."
I love watching these poor, pathetic people (pundits) on television working so hard and so seriously to try and figure me out. They can't!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 12, 2016