attack

On Sunday morning, President Trump launched an attack on ” ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen” in a series of tweets widely panned as xenophobic and racist. One of those Congresswomen just responded.

In a thread of three tweets, the President of the United States suggested that women of color recently elected to Congress should “go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came,” adding that they “came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all).”

While Trump didn’t attack any Congresswomen by name, it’s widely believed that he was referring to the four women who have been referred to as “the squad” — Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-New York), Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota), Ayanna Pressley (D-Massachusetts), and Rashida Tlaib (D-Michigan).

Trump recently sided with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California) in her feud with The Squad, after Pelosi dismissed the freshman lawmakers’ influence on social media and mentioned Ocasio-Cortez by name. For her part, Ocasio-Cortez said Speaker Pelosi’s “explicit singling out of newly elected women of color” was inappropriate, prompting Trump saying Pelosi was “not a racist.”

Of course, the only member of The Squad who isn’t a native-born U.S. citizen is Rep. Omar, a Somali refugee who immigrated to Minnesota. However, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez was born in New York City (President Trump’s place of birth), Pressley was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and Tlaib — whose family is Palestinian — was born in Detroit, Michigan.

Ocasio-Cortez responded to Trump’s Twitter thread with one of her own. The Bronx Congresswoman pointed out that the country they came from and took an oath to represent is the United States, and that the government which Trump called “a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world” is his own.

“[Y]ou are absolutely right about the corruption laid at your feet,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “You are angry because you can’t conceive of an America that includes us. You rely on a frightened America for your plunder.”

“On top of not accepting an America that elected us, you cannot accept that we don’t fear you, either,” she added. “You can’t accept that we will call your bluff & offer a positive vision for this country. And that’s what makes you seethe.”

Despite their spat, Speaker Pelosi sided with The Squad after Trump’s attack on them, and essentially called Trump a racist.

“When @realDonaldTrump tells four American Congresswomen to go back to their countries, he reaffirms his plan to “Make America Great Again” has always been about making America white again,” Pelosi tweeted. “Our diversity is our strength and our unity is our power.”

Trump’s tweets telling the Congresswomen to go back to their countries may have been spurred by his excitement over U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducting deportation raids on Sunday. According to NBC News, fear over the raids has caused many U.S. citizens of Hispanic origin to carry their passports with them at all times, should they be approached by ICE agents.

 

Carl Gibson is a politics contributor for Grit Post. His work has previously been published in The Guardian, The Washington Post, The Houston Chronicle, Al-Jazeera America, and NPR, among others. Follow him on Twitter @crgibs or send him an email at carl at gritpost dot com.

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