President Donald Trump told attendees at Thursday night’s Hanukkah celebration at the White House that the party was “all about Jerusalem,” referring to his decision the day before to recognize the holy city as the capital of Israel.
“Well, I know for a fact that there are a lot of happy people in this room,” Trump said in his remarks at the event, according to a pool transcript. Then, simply: “Jerusalem.”
Guests at the party included the children of his daughter Ivanka and son-in-law Jared Kushner, Arabella, Theodore, and Joseph, who have been raised as Jewish; Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, and the prominent Orthodox rabbi Meir Soloveichik.
Trump, flanked by First Lady Melania, invoked his Jerusalem decision — which has, as it was expected to, proven controversial — repeatedly throughout the evening.
“That wasn’t bad,” Trump said after stumbling over the pronunciation of Soloveichik’s name in his remarks. “You think it’s an easy one? It’s not. But he’s so happy with yesterday that he doesn’t care if I get it exact.”