Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Monday urged House Democrats to support a resolution to condemn President Trump for tweeting that four Democratic congresswomen of color should “go back” to their countries, even though all are U.S. citizens. “The House cannot allow the President’s characterization of immigrants to our country to stand. Our Republican colleagues must join us in condemning the President’s xenophobic tweets,” Pelosi wrote in a letter to House Democrats announcing a “forthcoming” resolution from Reps. Tom Malinowski (D-N.J.), who was born in Poland, Jamie Raskin (D-Md.), and other Democratic members who were born abroad. “This weekend, the President went beyond his own low standards using disgraceful language about Members of Congress,” Pelosi added. “Rather than attack Members of Congress, he should work with us for humane immigration policy that reflects American values.” In Trump‘s tweets, which appeared to be directed at freshmen Democratic Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (Mass.), the president suggested they “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” Omar, who came to the U.S. as a refugee from Somalia, is the only one among the four who was born in a foreign country. “So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run,” Trump wrote in a series of tweets Sunday morning. The House resolution would offer Democrats a chance to unite after internal strife over the past week when the four freshman lawmakers sparred with party leaders. Ocasio-Cortez had suggested in an interview with The Washington Post last week that Pelosi was engaging in a pattern of “explicit singling out of newly elected women of color.” Pelosi defended Ocasio-Cortez and the three other progressive lawmakers on Sunday after Trump‘s tweets. “When @realDonaldTrump tells four American Congresswomen to go back to their countries, he reaffirms his plan to ‘Make America Great Again’ has always been about making America white again,” Pelosi tweeted. “Our diversity is our strength and our unity is our power.” The resolution, depending on how it’s worded, could pose a test for House Republicans and the growing number of GOP lawmakers who are criticizing Trump for his weekend remarks. While most Republicans were silent about the issue on Sunday, several have since come out and chastised the president. Rep. Will Hurd (Texas), the only African American House Republican, was the first to GOP lawmaker to characterize Trump‘s tweet as “racist.” He was later joined by Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio), who used the same descriptor. Turner also called on Trump to apologize. Other Republicans who criticized Trump stopped short of describing the remarks as racist. Many of the GOP critics represent districts that will be Democratic targets in 2020. “The Tweet President Trump posted over the weekend about fellow Members of Congress are not reflective of the values of the 1,000,000+ people in Texas 22. We are proud to be the most diverse Congressional district in America. I urge our President immediately disavow his comments,” tweeted Rep. Pete Olson (R-Texas), whose district Democrats are eyeing for next year’s elections. “The president’s remarks to my colleagues across the aisle are inappropriate and do not reflect American values,” tweeted Rep. Susan Brooks (R-Ind.), who serves as recruitment chair for the House GOP arm but is retiring. Republican leaders in the House and Senate have yet to comment on Trump‘s tweets. Trump has not retreated from his initial remarks. On Sunday evening, he doubled down after Pelosi defended the four freshman lawmakers. “So sad to see the Democrats sticking up for people who speak so badly of our Country and who, in addition, hate Israel with a true and unbridled passion. Whenever confronted, they call their adversaries, including Nancy Pelosi, ‘RACIST, ‘” Trump tweeted.
“Their disgusting language and the many terrible things they say about the United States must not be allowed to go unchallenged. If the Democrat Party wants to continue to condone such disgraceful behavior, then we look even more forward to seeing you at the ballot box in 2020!” Trump added. Trump later said his tweets were “not at all” racist. “Not at all,” Trump told reporters at the White House on Monday when asked if his tweets about the lawmakers were racist. “If somebody has a problem with our country, if somebody doesn’t want to be in our country, they should leave.” Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) is also drafting a resolution to condemn Trump for his tweets. A spokesman for Jackson Lee said that her office is in discussions with House leadership.
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