WASHINGTON, Aug. 12 (UPI) — A day after twice stating President Barack Obama was the founder of the terrorist group the Islamic State, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump implied on Twitter the comment was just a joke.
“Ratings challenged @CNN reports so seriously that I call President Obama (and Clinton) “the founder” of ISIS, MVP. THEY DON’T GET SARCASM?”
Trump made the remark during two campaign swings in Florida. In the first, he made a point of emphasizing Obama’s middle name, Hussein.
He said Obama was the founder and Clinton the co-founder of the group, though the founder of the Islamic State was Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
Trump has previously backtracked on controversial comments by implying he was only joking. After saying he hoped Russia would hack Hillary Clinton’s emails and release their findings, Trump was challenged about whether he was actually calling for a foreign government to commit espionage against the United States in an effort to influence an election.
Trump said in that instance as well that he was being sarcastic.