By Lauren Rearick
The House of Representatives passed a resolution on Tuesday, July 16, that condemned a series of racist tweets President Trump sent about four congresswomen of color.
On Sunday, July 14, Trump sent a tweet which appeared to be directed at four Democratic congresswomen: Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, CNN reported.
In the tweeted thread, he incorrectly stated that the four congresswomen were not from the U.S., and instructed them to “go back” to their home countries. As noted by CNN, Ocasio-Cortez, Tlaib, and Pressley were born in the U.S.; Omar is a naturalized citizen and was born in Somalia.
Democratic and Republican politicians alike responded swiftly: Senator Elizabeth Warren called the tweets a “racist and xenophobic attack,” while Republican Congressman Will Hurd told CNN the behavior was “unbecoming of the leader of the free world.” Then, the day after Trump sent the tweets, the House of Representatives introduced H.Res.489, a ruling which sought to affirm that “President Donald Trump’s racist comments have legitimized fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color.”
The resolution stated that the House of Representatives strongly condemns Trump’s comments that “our fellow Americans who are immigrants, and those who may look to the President like immigrants, should ‘go back’ to other countries, by referring to immigrants and asylum seekers as ‘invaders,’ and by saying that Members of Congress who are immigrants (or those of our colleagues who are wrongly assumed to be immigrants) do not belong in Congress or in the United States of America.”
The measure, which was passed on Tuesday evening, earned the support of 235 Democrats and four Republicans (Hurd of Texas, Fred Upton of Michigan, Susan Brooks of Indiana and Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania), NBC noted; 187 Republicans voted against it.
This wasn’t the first time that President Trump’s comments resulted in accusations of racism, but it is the first time his racism has resulted in a House-passed resolution. Back in August, he defended white nationalists who protested the removal of a General Robert E. Lee statue in Charlottesville, saying, “You had many people in that group other than neo-Nazis and white nationalists...You also had some very fine people on both sides.” He referred to a migrant caravan as “invaders,” he called Mexican immigrants “criminals, drug dealers” and “rapists,” told Nigerian immigrants to go back “to their huts,” said Haitians had AIDS, said many migrants came from “shithole countries,” and more.
Although the President returned to his usual tweeting habits on Wednesday, July 17, his troubles are likely only beginning. The Washington Post reported that Trump’s racist comments could be used against him by judges in order to block some of his policies and following Tuesday’s vote, Rep. Al Green introduced a measure to begin impeachment proceedings, NBC News reported; a vote on whether to proceed is expected for Wednesday.