House Democrats are drafting a resolution to condemn President Donald Trump’s racist tweets against Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other high-profile freshman congresswomen, Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced Monday.
The Democratic response comes as Trump continued to disparage Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and her progressive colleagues, Reps. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) — all women of color — in a series of tweets Monday.
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Pelosi said Trump “went beyond his own low standards using disgraceful language” on Sunday, telling the four congresswomen to “go back” to the “crime infested places from which they came.” His further attacks on Monday were the final straw.
“This morning, the President doubled down on his attacks on our four colleagues suggesting they apologize to him,” Pelosi wrote to House Democrats. “Let me be clear, our caucus will continue to forcefully respond to these disgusting attacks.”
Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-Md.) and freshman Rep. Tom Malinowksi (D-N.J.), who was born in Poland, will draft the resolution, according to Pelosi. It’s unclear when the House will vote on the measure and the speaker did not specify in her letter.
“One step at a time,” a senior Democratic aide said when asked about vote timing.
Pelosi implored House Republicans – most of whom have been silent since Trump started his tirade against the congresswomen over the weekend – to vote with Democrats to condemn the president’s language.
“The House cannot allow the president’s characterization of immigrants to our country to stand. Our Republican colleagues must join us in condemning the president’s xenophobic tweets,” Pelosi wrote.
Trump ignited a firestorm on Sunday with his controversial tweets, implying that the four congresswomen were not Americans. Ocasio-Cortez, Pressley and Tlaib were all born in the United States. Omar emigrated to the U.S. as a Somalian refugee in the early 1990s and became a U.S. citizen at age 17 in 2000.
House Democrats – who spent the last week bitterly divided and publicly feuding over internal divisions – quickly joined together to denounce Trump as racist and demanding he apologize. Instead, Trump dug in, only elevating the controversy more in a series of Monday morning tweets.
“When will the Radical Left Congresswomen apologize to our Country, the people of Israel and even to the Office of the President, for the foul language they have used, and the terrible things they have said. So many people are angry at them & their horrible & disgusting actions!” Trump tweeted Monday.
Most Republicans have been silent on Trump’s remarks. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) defended Trump, saying the four progressive congresswomen “are a bunch of communists, they hate Israel, they hate our own country” in an interview on Fox. But he also urged the president to “aim higher.”
“They are American citizens. They won an election. Take on their policies. The bottom line here is this is a diverse country,” Graham said.
A handful of Republicans criticized Trump, with Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.) saying he was “appalled” by the president’s remarks and Rep. Pete Olson (R-Texas) urging him to “immediately disavow his comments.”
The House resolution will reference part of Ronald Reagan’s last speech as president in which he praised immigrants coming to the U.S., according to Pelosi.
“If we ever closed the door to new Americans, our leadership in the world would soon be lost,” Reagan said.