Donald Trump’s campaign on Tuesday stood by a controversial tweet issued by the candidate’s son, Donald Trump Jr., in which he likened Syrian refugees to a bowl of Skittles.
On Monday, Trump Jr. tweeted a graphic that likened Syrian refugees to Skittles, which swiftly triggered a wave of criticism.
“This image says it all. Let’s end the politically correct agenda that doesn’t put America first. #trump2016,” he tweeted, with a graphic that said: “If I had a bowl of skittles and I told you just three would kill you. Would you take a handful? That’s our Syrian refugee problem.”
Despite widespread condemnation, the campaign stood by the tweet and in a statement called Trump Jr. “a tremendous asset to the campaign.”
“America has become less safe under Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, and Clinton’s planned 550% increase in Syrian refugees is a dangerous proposal that will put American lives at risk,” said senior communication adviser Jason Miller. “Speaking the truth might upset those who would rather be politically correct than safe, but the American people want a change, and only Donald Trump will do what’s needed to protect us.”
Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, also defended the comparison to CNN’s Erin Burnett.
“What we do know is that many Americans are concerned with the lack of vetting that’s going on. We see what’s happening all across Europe … that has been a disaster,” she said Tuesday on “Erin Burnett OutFront.”
But Mars Candy, which produces Skittles, said in a statement, “Skittles are candy. Refugees are people. We don’t feel it’s an appropriate analogy. We respectfully refrain from further commentary as anything we say could be misinterpreted as marketing.”
Read More: CNN