The irony? Ali was a devout Muslim, and Trump has suggested temporarily banning Muslims from entering the U.S. And because of this suggestion, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has been slammed as Islamophobic.
"To all of our Donald Trump supporters who tell us that they love Muhammad Ali but say they hate Muslims – understand Ali was a devout Muslim that took his faith very seriously,” Sanders said at an event at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum Saturday.
Trump tweeted Saturday, "Muhammad Ali is dead at 74! A truly great champion and a wonderful guy. He will be missed by all!"
Muhammad Ali is dead at 74! A truly great champion and a wonderful guy. He will be missed by all!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 4, 2016
The differences in opinion between Trump and Ali became apparent in December after two Islamic extremists killed 14 people in San Bernardino, Calif. Following the tragedy, Trump made his infamous Muslim ban proposal.
Shortly afterward, Ali issued a statement titled "Presidential Candidates Proposing to Ban Muslim Immigration to the United States,” that condemned the shootings, but also was construed as a jab at Trump. "We as Muslims have to stand up to those who use Islam to advance their own personal agenda," Ali wrote. "They have alienated many from learning about Islam."
MaryAlice Parks contributed to this report.