Republican presidential hopeful Dr. Ben Carson on Monday had a chance to correct any media misperceptions about whether he actually saw televised footage of American Muslims cheering in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. He didn’t exactly do it.
Republican firebrand Donald Trump told a gathering Saturday in Birmingham, Ala., that he saw “thousands” of people cheering in Jersey City, N.J., “when the World Trade Center came tumbling down.”
Carson previously told reporters he remembered seeing American Muslims celebrating the 9/11 attacks, but then walked it back in a statement Monday.
“Dr. Carson does not stand by the statements that were reported today,” the campaign’s communications director said in a statement. He was hearing and thinking something differently at the time. He does, however, recall and had his mind on the celebrations in the Middle East.”
Asked about the comment Monday afternoon during a Las Vegas Review-Journal editorial board meeting, Carson downplayed the exchange with the reporter.
“The reporter said, do you remember, you know, people cheering? I said, yeah, I saw the things on television everybody else did. I’m not exactly sure what they’re trying to make out of it.
“They were the ones who were asking the questions. Did I see it? I saw it. Did we go into great detail about where it was from? That’s a trick question. They wanted to say, ‘Carson says he saw a video that doesn’t exist.’ I mean, you know how they are. This is crazy.”