“‘Friends’ don’t pay tribute by peddling b.s. theories about Michael’s ‘loss in confidence’. This fool Trump needs to sit down,” Jermaine wrote on Twitter. “Michael’s confidence was affected by the pressures, injustice and vitriol of external circumstances. Period.”
He continued: “Name-dropping Michael don’t make you cool and won’t win you votes. Especially when using botched facts.”
At CNN’s GOP Town Hall on Thursday, Trump offered up the King of Pop’s “real story.”
“He was an unbelievably talented guy. He lost his confidence. He lost tremendous confidence because of, honestly, bad, bad, bad surgery,” Trump, 69, said. “He had the worst. He had people that did numbers on him that were just unbelievable. Facially, you know, the plastic surgeons.”
Trump added, “He was an unbelievable talent who actually lost his confidence. Believe it or not, when you lose your confidence in something, you can even lose your talent.”
Jermaine, 61, later clarified his remarks, addressing TMZ as he tweeted, “I never said ‘You’re no friend of Michael.’ He was. It’s ‘botched surgery’ talk that I don’t expect from a friend.”
Trump previously commented on Michael’s lack of confidence after his death in 2009 at the age of 50.
“Now, Michael wasn’t the same Michael for the last 10 years. He was not well. He had a lot of problems, a lot of difficulties,” he wrote in TIME. “He had a very rough 10 years. He was embarrassed by it. He was embarrassed by what was happening to him.”