“It’s MAGA country,” he told the crowd. “I didn’t hear that term until that third rate actor in Chicago went out and said I was beaten up by MAGA country, can you believe it?”
“Turned out to be a total lie,” he added.
Trump spoke as the White House Correspondents’ Dinner took place in Washington, D.C., an event he has skipped the past two years.
Smollett had been indicted on 16 charges in February for falsely claiming he had been the victim of a racial and homophobic attack, in which he alleged the attackers yelled “This is MAGA country.”
Chicago’s State Attorney controversially dropped all charges against the actor to the surprise of the city’s police officials and mayor, Rahm Emanuel, who called it an “abomination of justice.”
On Wednesday, Smollett’s “Empire” co-stars Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson signed a letter defending the embattled actor, along with other key cast members: “He is innocent…he is honest,” they wrote. Read the full letter here.