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Nadler Statement Condemning President Trump's Racist Comments Directed at Members of Congress

Jul 16, 2019

Washington, D.C. – Today, House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) delivered the following floor statement in support of H.Res. 489, a resolution condemning President Trump's racist comments directed at Members of Congress: 

"Mr. Speaker, the comments described in this Resolution were not just offensive to our colleagues, they were inconsistent with the principles and values upon which this nation was founded upon.

"In urging 4 female Members of Congress of color to "go back" where they came from, these comments were not only factually incorrect, but they were also deeply hurtful and divisive.

"These were shocking comments, even from an Administration that rips children from the arms of their parents and warehouses asylum-seekers in facilities under inhumane conditions.

"We cannot let this moment pass without a forceful condemnation.

"Need I remind the Speaker that this is the same President who defended the "very fine people" at the neo-Nazi march on Charlottesville, who denounced the "S-hole countries" in Africa and the Caribbean, who claimed that Haitian immigrants "all have AIDS," and who declared that a Mexican-American judge who was born in the United States had an "inherent conflict of interest" against him.

"At every turn, Democrats have denounced offensive comments that emanate from the White House, but the silence coming from the other side of the aisle has been deafening.  I hope that will finally change today.

"This Congress must speak—loudly and with one voice—to condemn the President’s words and, more importantly, to condemn the sentiments behind them.

"The United States should be a beacon of hope and a refuge to those who need its protection and it should welcome with open arms those who embody our values and ideals.  From our earliest days as a nation, we have welcomed people fleeing persecution and violence, and those who seek economic opportunity and freedom in a land whose diversity is one of its greatest strength.

"But the President has, instead, pursued a relentless campaign to build both a literal and a figurative wall around this nation.  We must not turn our backs on our historic commitment to immigration and to refuge and we must not fall prey to racial stereotypes and nativist fearmongering.

"It was Martin Luther King who told us that "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character."  The offensive words by the President undermine that dream.

"I hope that all of my colleagues will join me in denouncing racism and supporting this resolution.  I reserve the balance of my time."

116th Congress