Donald Trump Iran hostage video claim newday_00000000.jpg
Donald Trump Iran hostage video claim newday_00000000.jpg
Now playing
01:41
Trump walks back Iran video claim
Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein waits to be introduced prior to a press conference at the National Press Club August 23, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Win McNamee/Getty Images
Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein waits to be introduced prior to a press conference at the National Press Club August 23, 2016 in Washington, DC.
Now playing
01:44
Jill Stein raises millions for recount
Former Democratic US Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks to staff and supporters at the New Yorker hotel after her defeat in the presidential election November 9, 2016 in New York. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski        (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images
Former Democratic US Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks to staff and supporters at the New Yorker hotel after her defeat in the presidential election November 9, 2016 in New York. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:14
Scientists urge Clinton to call for recount
LYNDEN, WA - MAY 07: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gives a speech during a rally at the The Northwest Washington Fair and Event Center on May 7, 2016 in Lynden, Washington. Trump became the Republican presumptive nominee following his landslide win in Indiana on Tuesday. (Photo by Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images)
Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
LYNDEN, WA - MAY 07: Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gives a speech during a rally at the The Northwest Washington Fair and Event Center on May 7, 2016 in Lynden, Washington. Trump became the Republican presumptive nominee following his landslide win in Indiana on Tuesday. (Photo by Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images)
Now playing
03:25
Donald Trump's wild ride
Now playing
01:46
Trump's challenges in the Middle East
donald trump undocumented immigrants crime fact check origwx ty_00013807.jpg
donald trump undocumented immigrants crime fact check origwx ty_00013807.jpg
Now playing
02:47
Fact checking Trump on crimes by immigrants
Mark Makela/Getty Images/Lintao Zhang/Getty Images
Now playing
01:26
Trump vs. the tape on Obama and the protester
Now playing
01:28
Trump compares Clinton email probe to Watergate
Members of the Secret Service rush Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump off the stage at a campaign rally in Reno, Nev., on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. (AP Photo/John Locher)
John Locher/AP
Members of the Secret Service rush Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump off the stage at a campaign rally in Reno, Nev., on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Now playing
01:20
Donald Trump rushed off stage by Secret Service
AFP/Getty Images
Now playing
02:16
Trump reads letter from Patriot's coach at rally
US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during rally at the Atkinson Country Club in Atkinson, New Hampshire on November 4, 2016.
Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images
US Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speaks during rally at the Atkinson Country Club in Atkinson, New Hampshire on November 4, 2016.
Now playing
01:56
Trump on US officials: 'What a group of losers'
donald trump nice and cool pensacola fl bts_00001523.jpg
donald trump nice and cool pensacola fl bts_00001523.jpg
Now playing
00:49
Trump's mantra in campaign's final week: Stay on point
donald trump nice to hillary clinton and democrats orig cm_00000000.jpg
donald trump nice to hillary clinton and democrats orig cm_00000000.jpg
Now playing
01:52
Audio of Trump praising the Clintons and Democrats
cuomo lewandowski hillary clinton email exchange newday_00002327.jpg
cuomo lewandowski hillary clinton email exchange newday_00002327.jpg
Now playing
01:28
Cuomo grills Lewandowski on Clinton email 'hypocrisy'
Now playing
01:49
Meet the other Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

Story highlights

Donald Trump admitted he had not seen video of a US plane delivering cash to Iran

That claim was part of Trump's criticism of the US deal with the country

Washington CNN —  

Donald Trump backed off a false claim Friday morning, admitting he had not seen a video of a $400 million payment being unloaded from a US plane in Iran.

The Republican nominee had claimed at rallies twice this week that such a video existed, saying in Maine on Thursday that it was provided by Iranians “to embarrass our president because we have a president who’s incompetent.”

What Trump had actually seen in news reports was video of three American prisoners who Iran had released arriving in Geneva, Switzerland.

Trump admitted his error in an early-morning tweet Friday, without actually saying he was wrong.

“The plane I saw on television was the hostage plane in Geneva, Switzerland, not the plane carrying $400 million in cash going to Iran!” he tweeted.

It was a rare reversal for Trump, who has stood by inaccurate or unproven claims previously – insisting he’d seen videos of Muslim Americans in New Jersey cheering the September 11, 2001, attacks. His political rise began during the 2012 campaign, when he insisted that Obama release his birth certificate, questioning the President’s American citizenship.

Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine hit Trump on Friday for the video claim, saying he seems “confused” on CBS’ “This Morning,” in an interview taped before Trump backtracked.

“I have no idea what he’s talking about. It (the video) doesn’t exist. He might be thinking about Iran Contra from like 35 years ago or something like this,” Kaine said.

He pointed to Trump’s recent criticism of Kaine, who Trump said in a late-July news conference “did a terrible job in New Jersey” – despite Kaine being a governor and senator from Virginia, not New Jersey. Kaine said Trump must have confused him with Tom Kean, who was New Jersey’s governor until 1990.

“He was confusing it with a situation from two or three decades ago. Maybe that’s what he’s doing with this bogus video claim,” Kaine said.

Asked if he thinks Trump is confused, Kaine said: “I absolutely think he’s confused.”

Paul Manafort, Trump’s campaign chairman, responded to Kaine on Fox News Friday morning, saying he’s “not sure there was confusion” on Trump’s part.

“The point that he was making is the cash-transfer took place and it was taking place consistent with the transfer of hostages,” Manafort said.

“Again, what the Obama administration wants to do is get off of the point. The point is, $400 million in cash that most likely ended up in terrorist camps used against the west was given in exchange for hostages and the President of the United States lied to the American people, that’s the point.”

Trump has made criticism of the US delivery of $400 million in cash via a plane to Iran – the first installment of $1.7 billion in payments related to a decades-old dispute over an unfulfilled us arms purchase before the Iranian revolution cut relations between the two countries and settled at the same time Iran released four American prisoners – a staple this week on the campaign trail.

But Wednesday in Florida and Thursday in Maine, he went a step further, claiming he’d seen video of the cash actually being delivered in Iran.

“It was interesting because a tape was made. Right? You saw that? With the airplane coming in – nice plane – and the airplane coming in, and the money coming off, I guess. Right? That was given to us, has to be, by the Iranians,” Trump said in Portland, Maine.

“And you know why the tape was given to us? Because they want to embarrass our country. They want to embarrass our country. And they want to embarrass our president because we have a president who’s incompetent. They want to embarrass our president,” Trump said. “I mean, who would ever think they would be taking all of this money off the plane and then providing us with a tape? It’s only for one reason. And it’s very, very sad.”