Donald Trump, a renowned conspiracy theorist, was at it again on Monday morning, implying that President Barack Obama harbored some sort of connection, perhaps even sympathies, to Muslims who had committed acts of terror in the United States.
The presumptive GOP nominee made this allegation the morning after the deadliest shooting in modern American history -- a slaying of 50 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando -- during an interview on "Fox and Friends."
"[Obama] doesn't get it, or he gets it better than anybody understands," Trump said of the president's response to the nightclub shooting. "It's one or the other. And either one is unacceptable."
Trump spent years questioning Obama's birthplace prior to running for president. So while Monday's statement may be jarring, it's not altogether surprising.
The business mogul is rather expert at making such coy, suggestive remarks -- he made similar ones after last year's San Bernardino shooting. And usually, his accusations are just vague enough that he can later insist he wasn't actually implying the most nefarious interpretation. Still, many observers on Monday morning noticed Trump's insinuation.
Beyond the suggestion that Obama is collaborating with ISIS, Trump called on the president to resign for refusing to utter the words "radical Islam." He also continued to insist that the United States must temporarily ban Muslims from entering the country -- but added an even more frightening wrinkle by saying that many Muslims already in America "are worse than" Omar Mateen, the Orlando shooter.
"We're allowing people to come into our country that are no different than this maniac," said Trump. "I don't know how many people are going to end up dying from this."
As for his prescription for dealing with the problem, Trump offered little beyond the usual tough-sounding bromides. "I'm calling for strength, I'm calling for intelligence. We need strong surveillance," he said. Later, he added:
"We have to be very strong in terms of looking at the mosques"
"We have to really increase the bombing"
"We have to knock out their internet capability"
"We have to be furious for a short period of time and we're not doing it."
Trump concluded by congratulating himself and implying, once more, that Obama has some other motive.
"I'm getting thousands of letters and tweets that I was right about the whole situation," Trump said of his prowess in predicting terrorist attacks. "I don't want congratulations. What I want them to do is be tough and vigilant, our government. We are led by a man who is either not tough, not smart, or he has something else in mind. And the something else in mind, people can't believe it."
Editor's note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist
How will Donald Trump’s first 100 days impact YOU? Subscribe, choose the community that you most identify with or want to learn more about and we’ll send you the news that matters most once a week throughout Trump’s first 100 days in office. Learn more