“The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used,” Trump tweeted. “What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made – a big setback for DACA!”
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!
The attempt to clarify came after The Washington Post reported that Trump questioned in a meeting with lawmakers on Thursday why the U.S. would accept immigrants from “shithole countries” like Haiti or in Africa rather than in places like Norway. Trump had met the previous day with the prime minister of Norway.
“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” Trump reportedly told lawmakers during negotiations over DACA: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a program designed to block deportation of young people brought to the United States illegally by their parents.
In a subsequent tweet, Trump denied saying anything derogatory of Haiti in particular. “Never said anything derogatory about Haitians other than Haiti is, obviously, a very poor and troubled country,” he said, and suggested he would record future meetings.
Never said anything derogatory about Haitians other than Haiti is, obviously, a very poor and troubled country. Never said “take them out.” Made up by Dems. I have a wonderful relationship with Haitians. Probably should record future meetings – unfortunately, no trust!
Trump has threatened to kill the DACA program unless Democrats agree to a host of new security measures designed to block illegal immigration, including a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.
More: ‘Sh**hole countries,’ UN respond to Trump’s ‘Sh**hole countries’ comments
More: Report: Trump uses crude term while attacking protections for immigrants
More: ‘Divisive,’ ‘elitist,’ ‘racist’: Reactions to Trump’s immigration comments
Yet upcoming negotiations between the White House and Congress on immigration are likely to be shadowed by the reported presidential comments, which some lawmakers and human rights officials denounced as racist.
“The President’s statement is shameful, abhorrent, unpresidental, and deserves our strongest condemnation,” said Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. “We must use our voices to ensure that our nation never returns to the days when ignorance, prejudice, and racism dictated our decision making.”
Rep. Mia Love, R-Utah, a daughter of Haitian immigrants, demanded Trump apologize, calling his comments “unkind, divisive, (and) elitist,” and that they “fly in the face of our nation’s values.”
The government of Haiti has demanded that U.S. officials provide an explanation of the president’s remarks.
Rupert Colville, a human rights spokesman for the United Nations, said: “If confirmed, these are shocking and shameful comments from the president of the United States, I’m sorry but there is no other word for this but racist.”
During his Friday tweet storm, Trump also rejected a bipartisan congressional proposal on DACA, saying it lacked funding for the U.S.-Mexico wall and did not end programs like “chain migration.”
While some Republicans supported the proposed compromise, Trump put the blame on Democrats.
Saying he wanted a “merit based” immigration system that blocks drug dealers and criminals, Trump said the bipartisan proposal would somehow force the United States to “take large numbers of people from high crime countries which are doing badly.”
The so-called bipartisan DACA deal presented yesterday to myself and a group of Republican Senators and Congressmen was a big step backwards. Wall was not properly funded, Chain & Lottery were made worse and USA would be forced to take large numbers of people from high crime…..
….countries which are doing badly. I want a merit based system of immigration and people who will help take our country to the next level. I want safety and security for our people. I want to stop the massive inflow of drugs. I want to fund our military, not do a Dem defund….
Democrats said Trump’s goal, reflected in his alleged comment, is to allow immigration from predominantly white countries and block it from predominately black and brown countries.
Some congressional Democrats have threatened to block a new government spending plan unless the DACA program for young people is addressed, risking a government shutdown that also drew Trump’s ire.
“Sadly, Democrats want to stop paying our troops and government workers in order to give a sweetheart deal, not a fair deal, for DACA,” Trump tweeted. “Take care of our Military, and our Country, FIRST!”
If it happens, a government shutdown would not cut off funding for troops or military operations; only non-essential personnel would be affected.