Sen. Durbin rejects Trump denial of ‘s–thole countries’ comments
Sen. Dick Durbin shot down President Trump’s denial that he said the U.S. should stop accepting immigrants from Haiti and “s–thole countries” in Africa.
“He said those hateful things, and he said them repeatedly,” Durbin told reporters, confirming several reports of the heated Oval Office meeting a day earlier.
The President on Friday denied using the crass and racist language to describe countries he does not think are worthy of sending immigrants to the U.S. in a series of posts on Twitter.
“The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used,” he wrote.
He went on to criticize the immigration deal that was being discussed when he made his disparaging remarks, saying: “What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made — a big setback for DACA!”
Durbin, of Illinois, somberly countered Trump’s version of events.
Trump, “in the course of his comments, said things which were hate-filled, vile and racist,” Durbin told reporters.
“I cannot believe that in the history of the White House, in that Oval Office, any President has spoken the words that I personally heard our President speak yesterday.”
Durbin, the Senate’s No. 2 Democrat, explained that as part of that deal being hammered out by a bipartisan group of Senators, a lottery for visas that has benefited people from Africa and other nations would be ended, the sources said, though there could be another way for them to apply.
Durbin said people who would be allowed to stay in the U.S. included those who had fled here after disasters hit their homes in places such as El Salvador, Guatemala and Haiti.
Trump specifically questioned why the U.S. would want to admit more people from Haiti, according to Durbin.
As for Africa, he asked why more people from “s–thole countries” should be allowed into the U.S., the sources said.
“To no surprise the President started tweeting this morning, denying that he used those words,” Durbin added. “It is not true. He said these hate-filled things and he said them repeatedly.”