Trump Insults And Then Demands an Apology from Four Congresswomen of Color

A day after President Donald Trump told four congresswomen of color to “go back” to their countries, he demanded they apologize to him, the US, and Israel for the “terrible things they have said.” All four of Trump's targets for racist attacks are US citizens.

Trump took aim at the four freshman representatives in a series of tweets on July 14 amid an ongoing feud between the congresswomen and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

Despite not naming the lawmakers, the tweets were widely understood to be directed at Democratic representatives Rashida Tlaib of Michigan, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota. “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 tweeted. He continued: “Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came. Then come back and show us how it is done.”

Three of the lawmakers referred to in the tweet were born in the United States. Tlaib was born to Palestinian immigrants in Detroit. Ocasio-Cortez was born to parents of Puerto Rican descent in the Bronx. Pressley, who is Black, was born in Cincinnati but raised in Chicago. Omar, who was born in Somalia, came to the US as a refugee at age 12 and is a naturalized citizen.

“These places need your help badly, you can’t leave fast enough. I’m sure that Nancy Pelosi would be very happy to quickly work out free travel arrangements!” Trump added.

Trump’s racist remarks were quickly condemned by the left, including the four female legislators.

“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.”

“You are stoking white nationalism [because] you are angry that people like us are serving in Congress and fighting against your hate-filled agenda,” Omar said, before quoting Robert F. Kennedy. Pressley, meanwhile, shared a screenshot of the racist tweet and wrote, “THIS is what racism looks like.”

Ocasio-Cortez responded in kind with a series of tweets addressing the president. “Mr. President, the country I ‘come from,’ [and] the country we all swear to, is the United States,” she wrote. “But given how you’ve destroyed our border with inhumane camps, all at a benefit to you [and] the [corporations] who profit off them, you are absolutely right about the corruption laid at your feet.” Republicans largely remained silent about the president’s racist remarks. According to The New York Times, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s office declined to comment, and “Republican House leaders did not respond to emails seeking comment.” However, three Republicans from Texas have condemned the comments as of Monday, July 15.

Representative Pete Olson (R-Texas) said the comments were not reflective of the values in his district. “We are proud to be the most diverse Congressional district in America,” he tweeted. “I urge our President immediately disavow his comments.” In an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour, Representative Will Hurd (R-Texas) called Trump’s tweets “racist and xenophobic.” Hurd added, “It’s also behavior that’s unbecoming of the leader of the free world. He should be talking about things that unite, not divide us.” Late on July 14, Trump doubled down and accused Democrats of condoning “disgraceful behavior” and using “disgusting language.”

“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,’” he 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!”

On Monday, Trump demanded that the lawmakers he insulted apologize to the country, Israel, and his office for “the foul language they have used.” He added, “So many people are angry at them [and] their horrible [and] disgusting actions!” Tlaib and Omar, the first two Muslim women elected to Congress,have been criticized for comments made against Israel though much of that criticism was fueled by smears from conservative pundits and politicians. In an interview published on July 13, Tlaib accused Israel of engaging in “continued dehumanization and racist policies.”

In February, Omar was forced to apologize after making comments about the Israel lobby in the US. Her remarks were denounced by House Democrats as “anti-Semitic tropes,” NBC News reported. In a statement released on Twitter, Omar said she “unequivocally apologize[s]” for the remarks but reaffirmed her criticisms of lobbyists.

This is not the first time Trump has made vile, racist remarks. When he launched his campaign in 2015, he notoriously called Mexican immigrants “drug dealers, criminals, rapists.” He has referred to migrants crossing the southern border as “animals.” In 2017, following the deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, Trump claimed there were good people “on both sides.”

About the Author

Nicole Rojas is a breaking news writer for The North Star. She has published in various venues, including Newsweek, GlobalPost, IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly, and the Long Island Post. Nicole graduated from Boston University in 2012 with a degree in print journalism. She is an avid world traveler who recently explored Asia and Australia.