During an Oval Office meeting in which lawmakers suggested restoring protections for immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador, and Africa, Trump lashed out at the prospect of enacting legislation for those who come from “shithole countries.”
“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” Trump said while in a meeting with Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Richard Durbin (D-IL), as well as those with hardline immigration stances, including Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR), among others.
Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI) took to Twitter to pose the “real question” that everyone should be asking.
The real question is why we allow presidents from sh*thole companies like the Trump Organization https://t.co/OHD7rLPHwK
— Rep. Mark Pocan (@repmarkpocan) January 11, 2018
The Trump Organization, of course, is currently under investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller for possible money laundering.
Per The Washington Post:
An investigation by the New York Times disclosed the tip of this rotten iceberg in 2015. Reporters spent more than a year piercing some of the many shell corporations set up to obscure luxury condo purchases on Central Park South in Manhattan. Along with chief executives and celebrities buying primo properties, the Times found miscreants and crooks.
At the Trump International, on the southwest corner of Central Park, the Times noted that more than half of all condo sales were to hidden buyers. A more recent study by USA Today found that the number of veiled transactions involving the Trump Organization took a big jump as the boss man’s political fortunes rose. Since Trump captured the Republican nomination last summer, the share of hidden buyers of his branded properties has climbed to 70 percent, the newspaper found.
The president may be waking to the possibility that Mueller will drag this unseemly marketplace into the glare of public scrutiny. In a revealing interview with the Times last month, Trump signaled that he expects investigators to find some transactions that will undercut his claims to do no business with Russia. “I mean, it’s possible there’s a condo or something,” he said. “I sell a lot of condo units, and somebody from Russia buys a condo, who knows?”
Pocan, for his part, was not the only person to address the remark. Even White House principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah issued a response amid the swift backlash.
Most tellingly, Shah’s response is neither a condemnation nor a denial of Trump’s disgusting words. Rather, he parrots Trump’s misguided talking points and fear mongering regarding the “dangers” of immigrants.
The acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Thomas Homan, has gone so far as to claim, contrary to what Trump has repeated throughout his tenure in office, that undocumented immigrants committed no more crimes than native-born Americans.
At off-cam WH briefing acting ICE dir. Horman concedes undocumented immigrants do not commit more crimes than native born Americans.
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) June 28, 2017
During today’s meeting at which the controversial comments took place, Trump went so far as to suggest that the United States should welcome people who come from countries like Norway. Trump met with the Norwegian Prime Minister yesterday. The difference, of course, is that Norwegians are overwhelmingly white, whereas those from Haiti, El Salvador, and Africa are not.
While the intent of the meeting was to find common ground for a bipartisan immigration deal, Trump’s glaringly racist and petulant comments reportedly left lawmakers stunned.
Trump’s remark comes on the heels of his administration’s decision to end protections for more than 200,000 Salvadorans living in the United States. The move jeopardizes an entire subset of people who have been living in the country for 15 years.
While Trump has a special affinity for hypocrisy, today’s comments certainly take the cake.