During a meeting discussing immigration reform with Washington lawmakers, President Trump reportedly made racially charged, disparaging remarks, according to sources. Several politicians and news networks have since denounced the remarks, while others are reporting that the comments align with his base.
The Washington Post reported that the President grew frustrated in an immigration deal that would allow for protections for groups from nations including Haiti and some in Africa. He reportedly asked, “Why are we having all these people from s**thole countries come here?” according to sources present. The president also proposed that the United States admit more immigrants from countries like Norway. He had met with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg on Wednesday.
Following the reports, “CNN Tonight” anchor Don Lemon slammed the president on his show Thursday labeling him as a “racist.”
“The president of the United States is racist,” Lemon said at the opening of his show. “A lot of us already knew that.”
“Those comments are frankly disgusting,” Lemon continued.
Speaking on his show “Anderson Cooper 360,” Cooper remarked:
“For the President to believe that Haitians have not contributed extraordinary things to American society, that is ignorant. For him to claim that all the countries of Africa are ‘s***holes’ is woefully ignorant.”
MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace reacted saying, “This is so abnormal. This is a freak show.”
Fox News figures opined that Trump’s comments would likely have little effect on alienating his base.
“This is who Trump is. He doesn’t care. He shoots from the hip. And if he offends some people, fine. There’s so many more offensive things that are happening in this world,” shared Jessee Watters on “The Five.”
“This is how he speaks. He’s inelegant, yes. He’s unfiltered, yes. But what people like about him so much is that he’s authentic,” added Joe Concha appearing on the network Friday morning.
The White House issued a statement Thursday that did not deny Trump’s remarks.
“Certain Washington politicians choose to fight for foreign countries, but President Trump will always fight for the American people,” White House spokesperson Raj Shah said in a lengthy statement.
“The President will only accept an immigration deal that adequately addresses the visa lottery system and chain migration – two programs that hurt our economy and allow terrorists into our country. Like other nations that have merit-based immigration, President Trump is fighting for permanent solutions that make our country stronger by welcoming those who can contribute to our society, grow our economy and assimilate into our great nation,” it continued, in part.
As of Friday morning, Trump denied using the vulgar language, while refocusing commentary around his proposed DACA/immigration policies.
“The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used. What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made – a big setback for DACA!” he wrote.