Trump doubles down on calling Jewish Democrats 'disloyal to Israel' despite backlash

Jeanine Santucci

WASHINGTON -- Speaking to press on Wednesday, Donald Trump reiterated his earlier comments on Israel, saying "In my opinion, if you vote for a Democrat you're being very disloyal to Jewish people and you're being very disloyal to Israel.”

“I have been responsible for a lot of great things for Israel,” Trump said. 

More: Trump: Jews voting for Democrats show 'great disloyalty'

This is the second time Trump has expressed this sentiment, which prompted backlash on Tuesday from Jewish Americans. Trump, though, said his assertions are not anti-Semitic.

Trump’s relationship with Israel has made waves in recent days. Last week, Israel announced that two Democratic congresswomen were barred from visiting Israel after Trump tweeted that Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib “hate Israel & all Jewish people.”

He later attacked the Democratic Party after Omar said the United States should rethink aid to Israel. He said Democrats were “defending these two people over the state of Israel.”

Trump added on Tuesday: “I think any Jewish people that vote for a Democrat, I think it shows either a total lack of knowledge, or great disloyalty.”

CEO and National Director of the Anti-Defamation League Jonathan Greenblatt spoke out on CNN and said “I will be exactly clear on what that was: anti-Seminitism.”

"This vast majority of our community rejected and continues to abhor the xenophobia, bigotry and extremism of Donald Trump and his allies," Communications Director for J Street Logan Bayroff said in a statement. "They’re loyal to the Jewish and liberal democratic values of tolerance, equality, social justice and the pursuit of peace — not to the far-right agenda of this president, which continues to put the lives of American Jews and other vulnerable minority groups in danger.”

More: Trump promotes claim that he is ‘King of Israel’ as Jewish people tweet #DisloyalToTrump

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Trump says Jewish Democratic voters are 'disloyal' for a second time