Sarah Sanders Won't Answer if Donald Trump Thinks Democrats Hate Jews: 'It's a Question You Ought to Ask Democrats'

Despite being asked repeatedly from various reporters in a briefing Monday afternoon, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders would not answer the question of whether President Donald Trump truly believes Democrats hate Jews.

Trump told Republican donors at his Mar-a-Lago resort on Friday night, "The Democrats hate Jewish people," referring to anti-Semitism controversies involving Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar, according to Axios. Trump also apparently said he did not understand how any Jew could vote for a Democrat nowadays, and boasted about how much he had done for Israel, including moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.

NBC News chief White House correspondent Hallie Jackson said her question was about former campaign manager Paul Manafort, but first attempted to get Sanders to comment on the Democrats-and-Jews matter after Sanders did not answer directly when asked by another reporter.

"I didn't hear you actually answer the question," Jackson said. "So yes or no, does the president truly believe that Democrats hate Jews?"

Sanders said, "I am not going to comment on a potentially leaked document."

Jackson posed the question again.

"I think that they've had a lot of opportunities over the last few weeks to condemn some abhorrent comments," Sanders said, going around the question again and prompting Jackson to cut in. "I'm trying to answer. If you'd stop talking, I'll finish my statement."

Sanders continued that Trump has "laid out clearly his position on this matter," then blamed liberals again.

"Democrats have had a number of opportunities to condemn specific comments and have refused to do that. That's a question, frankly, I think you should ask Democrats," Sanders said. "What their positon is since they're unwilling to call it what this is and calling it out by name and take actual action against members who have done things like this, like the Republicans have done when they had the same opportunity."

sarah, sanders, huckabee, donald, trump, jews
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders during a press briefing at the White House on March 11. Sanders would not answer repeated questions regarding whether President Donald Trump thinks Democrats hate Jews. SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Jackson tried Sanders one more time.

"I just want to be very clear. You're not answering the question," she told Sanders. "Is there a reason?"

"I believe I answered it twice," Sanders said.

"You didn't say yes or no," Jackson said. "Does he really think Democrats hate Jews? I'm just trying to get a sense of that."

Sanders replied, "I think that's a question you ought to ask the Democrats."

.@HallieJackson: You didn't answer the question earlier. Yes or no -- does the president believe Democrats hate Jews?

SANDERS: "Ah, I'm not gonna comment."

JACKSON: You aren't answering the question.

SANDERS: "I believe I answered it twice."

(She never answered it.)

— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 11, 2019

It was the first question brought up during the briefing once Sanders opened the floor up to inquiries. ABC News chief White House correspondent Jon Karl brought up the report and Trump's recent statement that Democrats have become the "anti-Jewish party."

Sanders countered that Trump has been "an unwavering and committed ally to Israel and the Jewish people," and condemned Democratic leaders for failing to call out remarks made by its members.

"It's something that should be called by name. It shouldn't be put in a watered-down resolution, it should be done the way Republicans did it when [Representative] Steve King made terrible comments," Sanders said. "We called it out by name, we stripped him of his committee memberships, and we'd like to see Democrats follow suit."