“Recent threats targeting Jewish Community Centers and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries, as well as last week’s shooting in Kansas City, remind us that while we may be a nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its forms,” Trump said.
(The shooting death of an Indian man in Kansas actually occurred in Olathe, Kan., just outside Kansas City.)
It is unclear whether Trump’s remarks — he mentioned the two things first before moving onto other topics — will calm the criticism he has faced from groups, newspaper editorial boards and average citizens questioning why he has not spoken out.
In the Kansas shooting, Trump’s remarks came only hours after the FBI’s announcement that it was investigating the incident as a hate crime.
Trump has had more time to respond to the anti-Semitic incidents, which include 100 bomb threats called into Jewish centers and schools this year and, recently, vandalism at two Jewish cemeteries. However, he only last week offered his first public condemnation of the anti-Semitic incidents after declining to do so in previous news conferences.
One thing his remarks tonight did not clarify: What, exactly, he meant when he met with attorneys general on Tuesday and questioned who was behind the anti-Semitic acts. His comments appeared to many that he was suggesting someone may have been trying to frame his supporters, but it was not clear what he meant to Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro (D), who first publicly reported on the remarks.