Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump has vehemently defended a controversial tweet he posted on his Twitter account that included a photo of Democratic rival Hillary Clinton against a backdrop of money and a six-pointed star. Trump replaced the tweet shortly after sending it when he faced accusations of anti-Semitism.
But according to The Hill, Trump accused the media of "racially profiling" for linking the six-pointed star in his tweet to the Star of David. "So one of my guys, who is married to a Jewish woman," Trump said, referring to his social media director Dan Scavino, "He put out a tweet talking about crooked Hillary Clinton and on the tweet was a star, a star, like a star."
The bombastic billionaire told the crowd during his Ohio rally that he "didn't think anything" when he saw the image, which included the phrase, "Most Corrupt Candidate Ever."
"All of a sudden it turned out to be in the minds of the press, only because it could have been a sherriff's star it could have been a regular star," Trump said. "They said, 'Oh it had money behind it.' So actually they're racially profiling. They're profiling, not us, because why are they bringing this up? Why do they bring it up?"
Trump said he would have preferred his campaign keep the image up on his Twitter instead of replacing it. "Too bad, you should have left it up," he said. "I would have rather defended up and say no that's not a Star of David that's just a star that talks about corrupt Hillary."
The real estate mogul later tweeted: "Where is the outrage for this Disney book? Is this the 'Star of David' also? Dishonest media!" A photo of what appeared to be a colouring book for the movie Frozen with the phrase "With 50 stickers!" in a six-pointed star was included.
Trump's comments come on the heels of his Jewish son-in-law's defence that he is not, in fact, racist or anti-Semitic. Jared Kushner, husband to Trump's daughter Ivanka, defended his father-in-law in an op-ed in The New York Observer, a newspaper he owns. Kushner's op-ed was in response to an open letter from one of his employees, reporter Dana Schwartz.
"My father-in-law is an incredibly loving and tolerant person who has embraced my family and our Judaism since I began dating my wife," Kushner said in a statement sent to The Wrap. "I know that Donald does not at all subscribe to any racist or anti-Semitic thinking. I have personally seen him embrace people of all racial and religious backgrounds. The suggestion that he may be intolerant is not reflective of the Donald Trump I know."