Donald Trump: I Saw Thousands of American Muslims Celebrating After 9/11
Donald Trump is facing major backlash for claiming some American Muslims celebrated when the Twin Towers fell on 9/11.
"I watched in Jersey City, New Jersey - where thousands and thousands of people were cheering as the Towers came down,” he said at a rally in Birmingham, Alabama, over the weekend.
Trump repeated the claim on ABC’s This Week on Sunday.
“There were people that were cheering on the other side of New Jersey where you have large Arab populations,” he said. “They were cheering as the World Trade Center came down. I know it might be not politically correct for you to talk about it, but there were people cheering as that building came down -- as those buildings came down, and that tells you something. It was well covered at the time."
The citizens of Jersey City witnessed the tragedy of 9/11 from their own backyards. The Twin Towers loomed in the backdrop of the city. For 14 years an urban legend has persisted that some Muslims who live in Jersey City celebrated as the Towers fell. But that legend has long been discredited. The police and local politicians say it never happened.
Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop responded to Trump’s claims and said he "has memory issues or willfully distorts the truth, either of which should be concerning for the Republican Party."
Meanwhile, some of Trump's supporters are taking heat for roughing up a protestor at a rally in Alabama over the weekend.
Reporters who witnessed the incident say the man, from the Black Lives Matter movement, was kicked and punched as he was escorted out of the arena.
Trump yelled: "Get him out of here. Throw him Out!"
Trump talked out the incident on Monday morning’s Fox and Friends: “Maybe he should have been roughed up - it was absolutely disgusting what he was doing.”
Trump is also coming under fire for retweeting some questionable crime statistics. The stats allege that black people are responsible for 81 percent of white murders.
But the numbers are wildly inaccurate.
According to the FBI, black people were responsible for 14 percent of white murders in 2014.
The source of the numbers cited by Trump is the statistics bureau in San Francisco, which doesn't appear to exist.
Trump however is surging in the polls following the terrorist attacks in Paris. He's leading the Republican field with 32 percent support among Republican voters in a Washington Post / ABC Poll.