As the House of Representatives prepared to vote on a resolution condemning President Trump’s racist tweets about four minority lawmakers, he lashed out at the freshman Democrats again on Tuesday and questioned why Congress was not rebuking them instead.
“The Democrat Congresswomen have been spewing some of the most vile, hateful, and disgusting things ever said by a politician in the House or Senate, & yet they get a free pass and a big embrace from the Democrat Party,” Trump wrote on Twitter, listing several grievances about the lawmakers. “Why isn’t the House voting to rebuke the filthy and hate laced things they have said? Because they are the Radical Left, and the Democrats are afraid to take them on. Sad!”
His tweets marked the third day in a row of attacks on the lawmakers — a series that began Sunday with tweets in which the president said the four Democrats should “go back” to “the crime infested places from which they came.” Three of the lawmakers were born in the United States, and the fourth is a naturalized U.S. citizen who was born in Somalia.
House Democratic leaders announced Monday that they were preparing a resolution condemning Trump’s remarks. In a letter to Democratic colleagues, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) said Trump had gone “beyond his own low standards using disgraceful language about Members of Congress” and that Democrats would “forcefully respond to these disgusting acts.”
A vote on the resolution is planned for Tuesday night.
Rebuking Trump’s tweets could unify a Democratic caucus that has been frayed by tensions between Pelosi and the four liberal lawmakers informally known as “the Squad” on Capitol Hill.
The vote would also force Republicans to go on the record about Trump’s comments. Congressional Republicans were largely silent Sunday after his initial tweets — with some fearful of chastising a president popular with the party’s base — although a handful began speaking out critically Monday.
The four Democrats — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (Mass.) and Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) — held a news conference Monday in which they described themselves as part of a nation of tolerance that offers opportunity to people like themselves. Pressley was born in Cincinnati, Tlaib was born in Detroit, and Ocasio-Cortez was born in New York. Omar was born in Mogadishu, Somalia; her family fled the country amid civil war when she was a child, and she became a U.S. citizen as a teenager.
In his latest tweets, Trump accused the four lawmakers of being “Horrible anti-Israel, anti-USA, pro-terrorist” and took issue with the “public shouting of the F…word, among many other terrible things.”
All four lawmakers have called for Trump’s impeachment — Tlaib has done so using profane language — and have been highly critical of his administration, notably denouncing conditions at federal migrant detention facilities near the U.S.-Mexico border.
Trump’s comments on Israel and terrorism appeared to target Omar and Tlaib.
Earlier this year, Omar apologized after she was widely accused of anti-Semitism for suggesting that supporters of Israel’s government have an “allegiance to a foreign country.” She also came under scrutiny for a speech in which, while defending Muslims who lost their civil liberties in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, she said that “some people did something,” referring to the hijackers.
Tlaib, the daughter of Palestinian immigrants, has advocated a “one-state solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Arguing that the Israeli government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu effectively opposes the establishment of a Palestinian state alongside Israel, she has supported the transformation of Israel into a single, jointly governed Arab-Jewish nation. The idea has little support among either Israelis or Palestinians.
Ashley Parker and Rachael Bade contributed to this report.