It’s been only a couple of days since President Trump tweeted a racist screed telling four congresswomen of color, three of whom were born in the U.S., to “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” Since then, Trump has doubled down on his attacks, and many Democrats, and the four legislators themselves, have responded.
But what has the GOP been doing as this shitstorm has worked it’s way across the globe? Uh, well... not much.
Only a few GOP politicians have responded at all to Trump’s comments and the backlash. For those who have, their responses have ranged from totally dismissive to mildly disappointed.
“You’re going to have to ask the president what he means by those specific tweets,” acting Customs and Border Protection commissioner Mark Morgan said when asked about the comments on CBS’ Face the Nation.
Another administration official, USCIS acting director Ken Cuccinelli, tried to deflect questions about the tweets on CNN today.
“I didn’t see the tweet that you’re reading, actually. I can hear what you’re reading, but, I spent the weekend reading litigation and regulatory materials related to asylum, so,” Cuccinelli told CNN. “You know, I don’t—I can see the president is commenting on some of the splits in the Democratic caucus, in the House presumably, but beyond that I’m staying focused on trying to fix our asylum system.”
“I don’t find [the comments] racist,” Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin told ABC News. “Again, we’re focused on cryptocurrencies.”
Same, Steve. Same.
Sen. Lindsay Graham, a Trump ally, had some strong words for “the Squad.”
“We all know AOC and this crowd are a bunch of communists they hate Israel, they hate our own country,” Graham told Fox & Friends. “I think they’re American citizens duly-elected running on an agenda that is disgusting, that the American people will reject.”
Others tried to place the blame on the victims of Trump’s attack.
A few Republican members of Congress did dare to criticize the comments, if only very politely.
Even avowed opponents of Trump’s were pretty weak in their responses, like Sen. Mitt Romney.
Over the line!!!
But Romney waffled on even that tepid stance, telling NBC that the congresswomen “have views that are not consistent with my experience and not consistent with building a strong America.”
Sen. Susan Collins, who has opposed many of Trump’s policies, also called his comments “over the line.”
“I disagree strongly with many of the views and comments of some of the far-left members of the House Democratic Caucus—especially when it comes to their views on socialism, their anti-Semitic rhetoric, and their negative comments about law enforcement—but the President’s tweet that some Members of Congress should go back to the ‘places from which they came’ was way over the line, and he should take that down,” Collins said in a statement.
Some in the media were in shock that the noble, upright GOP would be so callous in the face of racism.
But Chris is wrong—this is the GOP, through and through. The party was racist in 2015, and in 2014, and in 2013, and every year before that, since at least the mid-’70s. This is the same party that adapted itself explicitly to take in the white Southerners who couldn’t handle the advancement of civil rights. Of course its representatives aren’t upset by the president’s racist remarks!
As usual, the only disagreement between mainstream Republicans and Trump is not the content of his beliefs, but the vulgar way they are framed. What the GOP desperately wants is to make racism palatable again.