Four female Democratic congresswomen responded Monday to President Trump’s attacks of the past two days by calling for an impeachment inquiry and turning the focus of the feud back to White House policies on immigration.
“This is a distraction and we should not take the bait,” Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., said at a Capitol Hill press conference in reference to the president’s remarks, adding,“This is simply a disruption and a distraction from the callous, chaotic and corrupt culture of this administration, all the way down. We want to get back to the business of the American people.”
Pressley was one of four freshmen congresswomen of color who Trump told to go back to their home countries in a tweet posted Sunday. Three of the four women the president targeted were born in the United States (Pressley, Ocasio-Cortez of New York, and Tlaib of Michigan) while the other, Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, is a Somali refugee who became a U.S. citizen in 2000.
Earlier Monday, Trump doubled down on his criticism of the Democratic women, stating that the four “hate our country.” Asked whether he had any concerns that white supremacists had found common cause with his remarks, Trump said he did not because “many people agree with me.”
Throughout the day, Trump continued to urge the lawmakers to leave the U.S., tweeting just before the press conference, “We will never be a Socialist or Communist Country. IF YOU ARE NOT HAPPY HERE, YOU CAN LEAVE! It is your choice, and your choice alone.”
At their own press conference, the four congresswomen are known collectively as “the Squad,” put forth theories on the president’s strategy for targeting them.
“Weak minds and leaders challenge loyalty to our country in order to avoid debating the policy,” said Ocasio-Cortez. “This president does not know how to make the argument that Americans do not deserve health care. He does not know how to defend his policies, so what he does is attack us personally and that is what this is all about. He can’t look a child in the face and he can’t look all Americans in the face and justify why this country is throwing them in cages so instead, he tells us that I should go back to the great borough of the Bronx and make it better. And that’s what I’m here to do.”
Omar called Trump’s policies “the agenda of white nationalists” and in a comment that that could be read as directed at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, said that it was time to begin impeachment proceedings. “So we can either continue to enable this president and report on the pile of garbage that comes out of his mouth or we can hold him accountable to his crimes,” Omar said. I can’t wait for Impeachment hearing or inquiry to start on this very disrespectful President.