Republican front-runner Donald Trump refused to back off his call for a ban on Muslim refugees Sunday morning, after an al-Qaeda affiliate released a recruiting video that prominently featured him.
The video purportedly by Somali terrorist group al-Shabaab uses historic civil rights era footage of Malcolm X and new footage of Trump to label the United States a racist society.
This comes after Trump called for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on,” a position most Americans support, according to recent polls.
The Donald shrugged off the new video after CBS’s “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson played a clip for him.
“And then the video goes on and says the West will eventually turn against its Muslim citizens,” Dickerson said. “It’s saying to Muslims, ‘You either join jihad or you leave the United States because of what Mr. Trump is proposing.'”
“Look, there’s a problem,” Trump responded. “I bring it up. Other people have called me and say, ‘You have guts to bring it up because frankly, it’s true but nobody wants to get involved. Now people are getting involved. People that are on different persuasions than me right now John are saying, you know maybe Trump isn’t wrong. We want to examine it.”
Dickerson then asked, “Does it concern you at all that you’re being used in essentially a recruitment video by a terrorist organization?”
“They use other people, too,” Trump said. “What am I going to do? I have to say what I have to say. And you [know] what I have to say? There’s a problem. We have to find out what is a problem. And we have to solve that problem.”
On Twitter Sunday, Trump used the al-Shabbab video as a pretext to go on the attack against Hillary Clinton.
Two weeks ago, Hillary Clinton drew scrutiny when she said during a Democratic presidential debate that ISIS is using Trump’s position on Muslims in recruiting videos. There’s no evidence that has happened yet, despite the al-Shabaab video — a fact Trump used in a Sunday Twitter critique of Clinton.
Trump tweeted: “Hillary Clinton lied last week when she said ISIS made a D.T. video. The video that ISIS made was about her husband being a degenerate.”
He then followed up: “Al-Shabbab, not ISIS, just made a video on me – they all will as front-runner & if I speak out against them, which I must. Hillary lied!”
During a campaign event in Milford, New Hampshire, Florida Senator Marco Rubio made an obvious but necessary point in defense of Trump. “Those radical jihadists do not exist because of Donald Trump or any other campaign, they were going to be around no matter what because they have a radical ideology and they’re pursuing it violently around the world,” he said. “So ultimately, he’s not the cause of radical jihadists.”