"That I can tell you is horrible," Trump said at a Thursday press conference about the recent antigay and racist assault on the gay Empire star. "I've seen it. Last night. I think that's horrible. Doesn't get worse."
That was the extent of his response. Trump then immediately switched to the topic of a wall-less Mexican border, which he called "the worst sin of all" in a long rant about immigration.
Republican leaders have been largely silent about Smollett, who was stopped around 2 a.m. Tuesday in downtown Chicago by two men wearing ski masks and yelling racial and homophobic slurs. The individuals then placed a noose around Smollett's neck. The two men punched Smollett and then poured an unknown substance on him.
"This is MAGA country," the men then yelled, according to Chicago police officials who spoke to The Advocate -- MAGA, of course, being a reference to Trump's campaign slogan of "Make America Great Again." This information was gleaned from interviews with Smollett after the attack, according to the Chicago Police Department.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, released a statement Wednesday on Twitter condemning "the racist, homophobic attack" as "an affront to our humanity."
"While video does not capture an encounter, detectives are taking this development seriously & wish to question individuals as more cameras are being reviewed," CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi stated as the photos were released.