Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
People | By Leon Thompson

'Shithole' Row between US President and Press Eclipses Immigration Reform Agenda

'Shithole' Row between US President and Press Eclipses Immigration Reform Agenda

United States President Donald Trump reportedly lashed out in a meeting with lawmakers about immigration reform, demanding to know why the U.S. should accept citizens from what he called "s***hole" countries, such as Haiti and El Salvador, as well as African nations.

"I can not believe that in the history of the White House and of that Oval Office, any president has ever spoken the words that I personally heard our president speak yesterday", he adds.

Several Pennsylvania Republicans are criticizing President Donald Trump this morning after reports that he questioned why the USA should accept immigrants from Haiti and "shithole countries" in Africa.

Mr Trump allegedly made the comments in a meeting with U.S. senators on Thursday to discuss the status of people subjected to the DACA scheme - known as "Dreamers" - who came to the country illegally as children and were given protection from deportation by former president, Barack Obama.

The remarks drew a firestorm of criticism and accusations that the president is a racist, but Trump took to Twitter to deny the reports.

"My colleague, Republican Sen".

"Why are we having all these people from s**thole countries come here", he asked.

Choosing to leave out the word "s--hole", the paper said that the remarks immediately sparked "controversy and indignation".

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Republican Senator Pat Toomey tweeted, "I hope the President retracts the suggestion, attributed to him yesterday, that America should not want immigrants from countries which he was accused of describing disparagingly".

The White House did not immediately respond to questions about the president's tweet. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) went on record to say he was in the room when it was made.

On Thursday, Haitian President Jovenel Moise demanded a meeting with the top U.S. diplomat in the country, Charge d'Affaires Robin Diallo, according to State Department officials.

Also Friday, the House's leadership rejected Trump's comments-if they're true, they said.

Capping a seven-tweet blast this morning, Trump wrote: "Never said anything derogatory about Haitians other than Haiti is, obviously, a very poor and troubled country". The largest is El Salvadoran, the second is Honduran and the third is Haitian and when I mentioned that fact to him he said "Haitians?"

Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal denounced the comments, telling MSNBC, "This remark by the president of the United States smacks of blatant racism, the most odious and insidious racism masquerading poorly as immigration policy".

In the USA, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) accused the president of falling "deeper and deeper into the rabbit hole of racism and xenophobia". They're not shocking. Not even really surprising, because this is who Donald Trump is. Ted Cruz, said on Twitter that "Haitians, El Salvadorans join distinguished list of people who've made our country better after making tough decision to leave theirs".

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