Trump reportedly calls Haiti, African countries “sh–hole countries”
On Jan. 11, 2018, Democratic Senator Dick Durbin from Illinois claimed that President Trump referred to many African countries, as well as countries with African heritage, such as Haiti, as “sh–hole countries” at a bipartisan White House meeting on DACA and immigration reform.
The responses from Congressmen to either confirm or deny the validity of this comment is divided along partisan lines. Multiple Republican senators, including Tom Cotton and David Perdue have stated that Trump did not refer to the group of nations as “sh–hole countries,” with Perdue describing the alleged as a “gross misrepresentation” of President Trump’s comments and opinions on them.
A GOP senior advisor admitted that the President used the term “sh–house” to describe the countries, contradicting the statements of his fellow party members. No GOP member has openly defended the connotations of these comments, including the president, who stated he would prefer immigrants from countries such as Norway.
On the Democratic side of the conflict, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker delivered a speech at a Senate Judiciary Hearing on Jan. 16 that attacked Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen for announcing that politicians “must move past the comments.”
Senator Booker not only addressed the supposed lack of morality in the situation, but also brought up that now is a poor time to anger the Democrats in Congress, as a bill on immigration reform is meant to be voted upon in the coming days.
Socially, the response has been rather large. Not only has this story not left the headlines of media outlets since the allegations broke, but large social responses have been elicited from community leaders.
On Monday, Reverend Maurice Watson, a pastor from Largo, Maryland, gave a sermon to a majority African American crowd regarding the disappointment and contempt he and his community feel towards this situation, claiming that President Trump’s rhetoric “makes people of color feel dehumanized.”
Vice President Mike Pence was in attendance for Martin Luther King Day. When asked about the Vice President’s attendance, Reverend Watson commented that his sermon was planned out ahead of the mass, and that he was not going to change his stance regarding the allegations for the sake of “being shy.”