Donald Trump Just Repeated One of His Most Vicious Lies

Say it with me: No one. Saw. The bombs.

Christian Gooden/St Louis Post Dispatch via ZUMA

At Sunday’s presidential debate, Donald Trump repeated one of the more pernicious lies of his presidential campaign—that the neighbors of the San Bernardino shooters saw bombs scattered at the couple’s home and said nothing. Trump, who had been asked about his plan to ban Muslims from entering the country, was arguing that American Muslims need to change their behavior and start reporting suspicious activity they see to authorities.

But Trump’s story is false. As the Washington Post‘s Glen Kessler points out, there’s no evidence that any neighbors saw anything. Nonetheless, Trump has repeated the claim over and over again over the course of his campaign. “One of the problems we have is the people in the community, the Muslim community are not turning over the sickos,” he said in an interview in June, before falsely describing the situation in San Bernardino.

But that broader premise is false too. The FBI says American Muslims regularly provide valuable tips on possible terrorist activity.


Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2019 demands.

We Recommend


Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.


Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.


We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.