Trump still insists thousands in Jersey City cheered the 9/11 attacks

24 Nov 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Chris Christie Tiptoes Around Donald Trump’s 9/11 Lie.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s demagoguery reached new highs in recent days with the blowhard billionaire’s ridiculous, inflammatory claim that thousands of Muslim-Americans in New Jersey celebrated the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States — offered absent any evidence of any kind. “There were people that were cheering on the other side of New Jersey, where you have large Arab populations. TRENTON — Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump on Monday said he’s owed an apology from those who have disputed his story that he watched on television as “thousands and thousands” of people in Jersey City cheered during the 9/11 attacks — an incident multiple officials and news reports say never happened.Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump has begun telling audiences that ”thousands and thousands” of Jersey City residents “cheered” when the Twin Towers fell on 9/11.

They were cheering as the World Trade Center came down,” Trump told ABC News on Sunday. “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. It seemed likely that after Donald Trump lied about the residents of Jersey City’s behavior on Sept. 11, 2001—claiming they cheered the attacks across the river in New York City—Chris Christie, New Jersey’s governor, would be first in line to repudiate him. And that tells you something.” As election-stats guru Nate Silver pointed out Monday, Trump remains highly unlikely to win the Republican nomination, given that so many GOP voters really don’t like him and that their feelings are only getting more intense.

Murrow and call Trump out for the deplorable Joseph McCarthy-style scoundrel he has become — not just offer tepid criticism for fear of offending his quarter of the Republican electorate. But Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Jeb Bush, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, Carly Fiorina, Rand Paul, John Kasich and Mike Huckabee can address these legitimate concerns while also denouncing Trump for his ugly insistence on depicting Muslim-Americans as a fifth column with no loyalties beyond religious ones. And despite widespread rumors of celebrations by Muslims in Newark and Paterson, The Star-Ledger reported that police and local leaders denied they ever happened.

If that happens, maybe the Trump bubble will finally burst, and maybe the briefly successful campaign of the first former reality television star to run for president will be looked back on as a passing storm. NJ.com readers have suggested that video was broadcast at the time showing people celebrating in Paterson, the city with the second-largest Muslim population in the U.S. When rumors began to circulate on the Internet that Mohammed was tied to terrorism and sympathetic to Sharia, Christie came to his aid. “This Sharia law business is crap,” he said. “It’s just crazy and I’m tired of dealing with the crazies.” (In 2014, he responded to a question about his record on Islam with an even more passionate defense of Mohammed. “Sohail Mohammed knows about as much about jihad as I do, being an Italian-Irish kid from Newark, New Jersey,” he said. “Sohail Mohammed knows about as much about Sharia law as I do.”) That did not go over particularly well with the far right.

I mean, listen, I can’t say, Matt, I can’t say that I have – it was a pretty emotional time for me because, as I’ve mentioned before, there’s family involved, there’s friends involved and so it was a pretty harrowing time. In 2012, the conservative National Review wrote about “Christie’s Islam Problem,” attacking him for, in addition to Mohammed’s nomination, having publicly “embraced and kissed” an imam. In 2013, when the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, put Christie on its list of public figures who “deserve recognition for their outstanding contributions to pushing back against Islamophobic trends in 2011 and 2012,” things only got worse. What was billed as the “Save Our State” initiative would have kept undocumented residents from using many state services, including blocking children from attending public schools. About 2 percent of the state’s nearly 9 million residents identified as being Muslim in 2010, according to data compiled by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies.

An article in the New York Post interviewing Trump just eight days after the attack makes no mention of him having witnessed the alleged celebrations. After Trump allowed a man at a town hall to characterize President Obama as a Muslim, Christie said, “I wouldn’t have permitted that… If someone brought that up at a town hall of mine, I would have said, ‘Before we answer, let’s clear some things up for the rest of the audience,’ and I think you have an obligation as a leader to do that.” This week, as WNYC’s Matt Katz points out, when Christie was asked about his 2011 appointment of Mohammed last week, he distanced himself from the idea that he was an ally to moderate Muslims. But the longer the other Republican presidential candidates tolerate Trump, the more they risk stigmatizing the GOP as a natural haven for knaves and fools. The great irony is, the official slogan of Christie’s presidential campaign – appearing in all caps at the top of his home page – is “Telling It Like It Is.” To be sure, I think there’s probably room in the crowded Republican presidential field for a straight-talking, no-nonsense contender who offers hard truths, without regard for whether the facts are popular. No.” Christie often tells of how he was called by President Bush on Sept. 10, 2001, and told that he had been chosen to serve as the U.S. attorney for New Jersey. (He was confirmed by the Senate in December 2001 and took office in 2002).

And if those assumptions are true, one wonders whether the New Jersey Republican will soon look back at this period and wonder what might have happened if he’d shown a little more courage.

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