"The company founded by a man named Henry Ford," Trump said.
"Good blood lines, good blood lines, if you believe in that stuff, you've got good blood."As reported by Raw Story, the backlash to the comment was swift, and many noted Ford's anti-Semitism and ties to Adolf Hitler.
"Henry Ford was a Nazi sympathizer who wrote 'The International Jew, the World's Foremost Problem,'" tweeted Bend the Arc: Jewish Action, a movement of progressive American Jewish voices.
The movement was referencing a series of anti-Semitic articles Ford published in his hometown newspaper, The Dearborn Independent, after he purchased it, as reported by PBS. According to the movement, Trump's comment was a dog-whistle for anti-Semites and white nationalists.
"You mean the part about him getting an award from the Nazis because Hitler liked his hot takes on the Jews? Those actions?" tweeted National Journal's editor-in-chief Jeff Dufour.
"Another wink and nod from Trump to his Nazi-base," wrote Gender Justice advocacy director Erin Maye Quade.
As reported by PBS, a close friend of Ford's claimed that the late business magnate lectured a group on a 1919 camping trip and attributed all the evil in the world to Jewish people.
"The Jews caused the war, the Jews caused the outbreak of thieving and robbery all over the country, the Jews caused the inefficiency of the navy…" he allegedly said.
In his articles in The Dearborn Independent, Ford suggested that a vast Jewish conspiracy was taking over America. He attributed various problems — such as agricultural depression, financial scandals, and strikes — to the Jewish people.
Along with General Motors, Ford's company also collaborated with the Nazi regime during World War II, which resulted in the genocide of approximately 6 million Jews in the Holocaust.Whether Trump was aware of Ford's anti-Semitism or not, Business Insider reported the president has shown a "fascination" with genes and heritage on many occasions. In one instance, the president recalled his late uncle, who was an MIT professor. According to Trump, this connection is the cause of his purportedly intuitive understanding of medicine.
As The Inquisitr reported, former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders released a campaign video early this year that suggested Trump was a threat to Jews. In particular, the video cast Trump as a white nationalist and noted the rise of hate speech and white nationalist attacks on synagogues.