Trump Repeats Apparent False Claim of Iran Cash Transfer Video
Trump made the claims at a rally in Maine.
— -- Donald Trump again referred to a video he claims to have seen of the $400 million exchange between the U.S. and Iran — despite his campaign saying otherwise.
"You know, it was interesting because a tape was made," Trump said to supporters at a rally in Portland, Maine, today. "You know why the tape was given to us? Because they want to embarrass our country."
Trump initially discussed a video of the exchange in detail at a rally in Florida yesterday. However, Trump's campaign told ABC News today that Trump was referring to footage he saw on Fox News of the American prisoners released in Geneva.
Furthermore, multiple senior government officials, including Secretary of State John Kerry, have cast doubt on the existence of such a video.
"I wonder where that money really goes," Trump continued. "Well, it went to -- either in their pockets, which I actually think more so. Or towards terrorism. Probably a combination of both."
President Obama pushed back on these types allegations during a press conference at the Pentagon today. Asked about the deal by ABC News' Mary Bruce, the president said it wasn't "a secret."
“We announced these payments many months ago,” Obama said incredulously. “This wasn’t some nefarious deal.”
Trump's rally was briefly interrupted by protesters carrying pocket-size Constitutions —- an act of solidarity with the father of fallen soldier Capt. Humayun Khan, with whom Trump has been feuding. The demonstrators were ejected from the venue.
"I sort of missed my protesters," Trump joked.
Trump also addressed the growing tremors of disunity within his own party. Today, he praised Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, calling him a “great guy." Trump made waves on Tuesday after he told the Washington Post that he wasn’t ready to endorse Ryan yet. His comments set off yet another controversy for the embattled candidate; leading the RNC Chair, Reince Priebus, to call Trump to express his frustration, sources told ABC News.
Trump’s running mate, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, however, did endorse Ryan. Trump on Thursday told the crowd of the conversation that he said preceded the endorsement.
“Mike called me and he said, yesterday, and he said ‘Would you mind if I endorse? I won’t do that if it cause any complications or problems, I would absolutely not do it,’” Trump recalled. Trump said that he told him to go ahead, which is what he said led to Pence’s endorsement.
Ryan has been vocal in his criticism of Trump. In an interview, Ryan indicated that he could pull his own endorsement.
"None of these things are blank checks," Ryan said of his endorsement in a radio interview with The Jerry Bader Show on WTAQ in Wisconsin.
But he also admitted frustration with Trump's campaign since the Republican National Convention in Cleveland.
"He's had a pretty strange run since the convention," he said. You would think that you'd want to be focusing on Hillary Clinton and all of her deficiencies. She is such a weak candidate that one would think we'd be on offense against Hillary Clinton.”
ABC's Benjamin Siegel and John Parkinson contributed to this report.
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