Donald Trump Faces Backlash for Tweets About Orlando Shooting – Including Calling for President Obama to 'Resign in Disgrace'
At least 50 people – including the shooter – died in the Sunday shooting at an Orlando, Florida, nightclub
Celebrities and mourners alike are weighing in on the Twitter messages posted by the presumptive GOP nominee in the wake of the deadliest mass shooting in American history.
“Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism, I don’t want congrats, I want toughness & vigilance. We must be smart!” Trump tweeted Sunday morning.
During a Monday phone interview on the Today show, Trump said claims that his tweets were self-serving are “false.”
“I said while I appreciate – because I’ve been receiving tens of thousands of tweets literally tweets and calls and letters and everything – because I’ve been the one that predicted it,” he said. “What I said is ‘I want you to be strong, I want you to be vigilant and I want you to be smart.’ I don’t want the credit.”
Omar Saddiqui Mateen opened fire on Pulse nightclub just after 2 a.m., killing at least 49 people before dying in an exchange of gunfire with authorities. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack, Reuters reports.
Trump initially posted a straight forward tweet following the shooting, describing the incident as “really bad.” But he later sent a string of messages, noting that he “called it,” – referring to the attack – mentioning that he “asked for the ban” on Muslim immigration, and criticizing President Obama and Hillary Clinton.
“Is President Obama going to finally mention the words radical Islamic terrorism? If he doesn’t he should immediately resign in disgrace!” he tweeted.
Trump echoed his sentiments in a statement posted to his campaign’s website, in which he called for Obama to “step down” from the presidency.
He added: “If Hillary Clinton, after this attack, still cannot say the two words ‘Radical Islam’ she should get out of this race for Presidency.”
Obama has not responded to Trump’s comments, but during a Monday phone interview on the Today show, Clinton said Trump is simply “obsessed with name-calling.”
“It matters what we do, not what we say,” she said. “It mattered that we got [Osama] Bin Laden, not what name we called him.
“I have clearly said that we face terrorist enemies who use Islam to justify slaughtering innocent people. We have to stop them and we will.”
She added: “I’m not going to demonize declare war on an entire religion. That’s just plain dangerous and it plays in to ISIS’ hands.”