In another unexpected retreat by Trump, the republican presidential nominee tweeted earlier today that his comment which again took the media by storm, when he said that Obama and Hillary were the "founder and co-founder of ISIS", was "sarcasm" even as he reaffirmed what he "meant" in a radio interview last night.
“ISIS is honoring President Obama,” Trump said Wednesday during a rally in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. “He’s the founder of ISIS. He founded ISIS."
“I would say the co-founder would be Crooked Hillary Clinton,” Trump added of his Democratic rival and Obama’s former secretary of State. Trump has previously referred to each as ISIS's most valuable player as well.
Still, when given an opportunity to talk down his statement yesterday in an interview with Hugh Hewitt, Trump doubled down on the claim, telling the radio host that "everyone's liking" the comments.
“I know what you meant. You meant that he created the vacuum. He lost the peace,” Hewitt said.
“No, I meant that he’s the founder of ISIS,” Trump replied. “He was the most valuable player. I gave him the most valuable player award."
But on Friday, Trump backpedaled, and tweeted that he was being facetious:
Ratings challenged @CNN reports so seriously that I call President Obama (and Clinton) "the founder" of ISIS, & MVP. THEY DON'T GET SARCASM?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 12, 2016
In July, Trump was under fire for saying he hopes Russian hackers find Clinton's 30,000 missing emails from her private server, statements he later dismissed as "sarcastic."
I love watching these poor, pathetic people (pundits) on television working so hard and so seriously to try and figure me out. They can't!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 12, 2016
While Trump's irreverent approach to the media, and its ongoing criticism, is by now well-known, his odd flippancy is starting to grate on some supporters, as observed in recent polls. It remains to be seen if he will, as he has promised before, change his style. For now, however, he adamantly refuses to do so.