Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin (Ill.) said Friday that he "personally heard" the now-notorious comments President Trump allegedly made Thursday at a bipartisan meeting on immigration. By Friday afternoon, a Republican senator had joined Durbin in apparently confirming the reports as well.
Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) said he talked to Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who was in the room at the Thursday meeting, and said that Graham told him that the comments being reported by the press are "basically accurate." A Democratic aide told NBC News on Thursday that Trump vented about immigrants coming to the United States from "shithole countries," although Trump has denied he used that "language."
"We ought not to disparage any other nation, frankly," Scott told The Post and Courier. "Thinking about the success of America, it is the melting pot. It's the ability to weave together multiple communities together for one nation."
Although Graham has not confirmed his remarks to The Post and Courier, Durbin claimed earlier Friday that his South Carolina colleague "spoke up and made a direct comment on what the president said … For him to confront the president as he did, literally sitting next to him, took extraordinary political courage and I respect him for it." The remarks have been internationally condemned, with the United Nations human rights office deeming them "racist." Jeva Lange
Update 2:41 p.m.: In a statement, Graham confirmed that he confronted Trump about his remarks, though he did not elaborate specifically on what the president said. Read the full statement here. Jeva Lange
The United Nations human rights office called President Trump's dismissal of Haiti, El Salvador, and African nations "shocking and shameful," with the spokesman for the U.N. high commissioner for human rights adding: "I'm sorry, but there's no other word one can use but racist." Trump allegedly asked why America would want people from "all these shithole countries" during a bipartisan meeting with lawmakers Thursday regarding immigration.
"You cannot dismiss entire countries and continents as 'shitholes' whose entire populations are not white and therefore not welcome," added spokesman Rupert Colville, as reported by CNN.
Trump, who met with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg on Wednesday, said the U.S. should try to instead attract people from Norway and similar countries. Eighty-three percent of the population of Norway is Norwegian, with another eight percent from other parts of Europe. Jeva Lange