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Trump Excoriated for Tweet About Fatal Shooting of Dwyane Wade's Cousin

After Wade's cousin was killed by a stray bullet in Chicago, Trump tweeted about her death and said, "African-Americans will VOTE TRUMP!"
Image: Republican nominee Donald Trump speaks at \"Joni's Roast and Ride\" in Des Moines
Republican nominee Donald Trump speaks at "Joni's Roast and Ride" in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S., August 27, 2016.CARLO ALLEGRI / Reuters

Donald Trump is getting backlash for a tweet about the fatal shooting of NBA star Dwyane Wade's cousin, in which he proclaimed, "Just what I have been saying. African-Americans will VOTE TRUMP!"

Critics immediately pounced on the tweet, which was sent out Saturday morning, a day after 32-year-old Nykea Aldridge was apparently accidentally struck in a gang-related shooting on Chicago's South Side while pushing her newborn in a stroller.

"You are disgusting," one person tweeted at Trump.

Others pointed out that the GOP presidential nominee misspelled Wade's first name at the beginning of the tweet, in which he wrote, "Dwayne Wade's cousin was just shot and killed walking her baby in Chicago."

"You can't pretend to care enough to check the spelling of his name before exploiting his cousin's horrific death?" one Twitter user asked.

Trump later tweeted the same message again, but with Wade's first name spelled correctly.

The Bulls shooting guard did not respond to Trump, but did tweet Saturday afternoon about the violence: "The city of Chicago is hurting. We need more help& more hands on deck. Not for me and my family but for the future of our world. The YOUTH!"

A short while later, Trump sent a more somber tweet: "My condolences to Dwyane Wade and his family, on the loss of Nykea Aldridge. They are in my thoughts and prayers."

But later, during a rally in Iowa, Trump referenced the tragedy again as he continued his push to try and appeal to African-American voters by pointing to high levels of violence in some communities.

"More than 6,000 African Americans are the victims of murder, of murder, every single year," Trump said. "Just yesterday, the cousin of NBA star Dwyane Wade, a great guy Dwyane Wade, was the victim of a tragic shooting in Chicago."

"We cannot as a society tolerate this level of violence and suffering in our cities," Trump said.

Trump recently began reaching out directly to black voters following polls that show he has the support of just 8 percent of African-Americans. While black voters historically vote Democrat more often than Republican, Trump's polling numbers on the black vote are particularly low.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton hasn't publicly commented on Trump's tweet, but her running mate Sen. Tim Kaine told reporters Saturday: "We just ought to be extending our sympathy to the family ... that's the only reaction that is appropriate right now."

"The tweet isn't important," Kaine said. "What's important is this horrible crime. A woman and her child on her way to a store getting shot — I mean it's really, really tragic."

This is hardly the first time one of Trump's tweets has prompted controversy, particularly after a tragedy.

Following the Pulse Nightclub mass shooting in Orlando — the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history — Trump tweeted: "Appreciate the congrats for being right on radical Islamic terrorism, I don't want congrats, I want toughness & vigilance. We must be smart!" He was criticized for the remark.