Fox News host Greta Van Susteren on Monday night grilled Donald Trump on his new proposal to ban all Muslims from immigrating the United States, but the real estate mogul defended his plan.
She asked Trump if the ban would apply to Muslim-American military members returning from overseas.
“They’ll come home. And we have to be vigilant. And we have to take care of the Muslims that are living here, but we have to be vigilant,” Trump responded.
“I have Muslim friends, Greta, and they are wonderful people,” he continued. “But there’s a tremendous section and cross-section of Muslims living in our country who have tremendous animosity. We can’t let this happen. We have a country to protect.”
“Does this apply to your friends?” Van Susteren then asked.
Trump said that his proposed ban does not apply to those already in the country.
Van Susteren then asked what Trump meant when he wrote in his proposal that Muslim immigrants would be barred “until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.”
The real estate mogul would not elaborate and said, “We have to figure out what’s going on.”
He later noted that he believes his fellow presidential candidates will agree with his plan. When Van Susteren noted that a few had already denounced his proposal, Trump said that those candidates were low in the polls.
Trump also defended his proposed ban during a campaign event in South Carolina on Monday night.
“I have friends that are Muslims,” he said, according to NBC News. “They’re great people but they know we have a problem.”
Watch Van Susteren’s interview with Trump via Fox News: