Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) trusts his memory about the fateful immigration meeting where Donald Trump insulted the entire continent of Africa, as well as a few Central American and Caribbean nations.
As the lone Republican in the meeting to essentially confirm Senator Dick Durbin’s account of Trump’s “shithole” comments, he threw some serious, if politely worded, shade at his colleagues Senators David Perdue (R-GA) and Tom Cotton (R-AK) who made the rounds of the Sunday morning talk shows to deny that the President uttered those words.
“My memory hasn’t evolved,” Graham said. “I know what was said and I know what I said.”
President Trump himself, after reportedly calling his friends to brag about what he said, has tried to deny that he’s a racist and attacked Senator Durbin’s characterization of his comments.
Senator Dicky Durbin totally misrepresented what was said at the DACA meeting. Deals can’t get made when there is no trust! Durbin blew DACA and is hurting our Military.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 15, 2018
Reports today indicate that the basis for Trump’s misrepresentation claim, as well as Senators Perdue and Cotton’s denials of the words that Senator Durbin attributed to the President, was that he actually called the countries “shithouse” rather than “shithole”, according to a Tweet from Politico reporter Josh Dawsey.
White House official told me tonight there is debate internally on whether Trump said "shithole" or "shithouse." Perdue and Cotton seem to have heard latter, this person said, and are using to deny.
— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) January 15, 2018
Why anyone would consider Trump less racist for calling the countries so objectionable to the President by a different insult confounds anyone but Republican Senators apparently.
Senator Lindsey Graham is the lone exception, and while he carefully avoided repeating the President’s exact words, he did say enough to confirm Senator Durbin’s version of the story, whatever the exact words Trump used.
“Following comments by the President, I said my piece directly to him yesterday,” Graham said. “The President and all those attending the meeting know what I said and how I feel. I’ve always believed that America is an idea, not defined by its people but by its ideals.”
With Graham’s home state colleague Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) confirming that Graham had told him after the meeting that Trump’s use of the word “shit hole” was “basically accurate,” it looks like Graham is the only Republican in the meeting willing to tell the truth and face the flack for doing so.
If only the other Republicans in Congress had the same commitment to truth over their loyalty to a racist President, perhaps they wouldn’t be in such a panic over their upcoming rout in the November mid-term elections.