President Donald Trump criticized Rep. Tulsi Gabbard on Thursday for claiming that he was supporting Al Qaeda.
During the Democrat debate on Wednesday, Gabbard accused the president of betraying the American people on terrorism.
“We were supposed to be going after Al Qaeda,” she said. “But over years now, not only have we not gone after Al Qaida, who is stronger today than they were in 9/11, our president is supporting Al Qaida.”
Trump expressed surprise at the accusation as he spoke to reporters while leaving the White House for a campaign rally in Ohio.
“Nobody knows what she meant by that,” Trump said. “She doesn’t know what she’s talking about.”
After the debate, Gabbard defended her statement, arguing that Trump’s positive relationship with Saudi Arabia was proof that he was supporting Al Qaeda, claiming that the Saudis directly support Al Qaeda.
Trump reminded reporters that he defeated the Islamic State caliphate during his first term as president.
“We’ve done a big job on Al Qaeda and everybody else,” he said. “So for her to make that statement is so ridiculous and she’s taking a lot of heat on it.”