This reference to four left-wing members of Congress — widely understood to mean Democratic Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (Mass.) and Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) — required an explanation and an apology. Instead, Mr. Trump doubled down on Monday, insisting, essentially, that his critics are the real racists.
If the president had a real press secretary who offered daily briefings, as was the long-established custom, now would be a time for clarification. A few of the questions that might be asked: Which
governments was Mr. Trump criticizing? Is it the president’s view that foreign-born Americans should be judged based on their place of origin, rather than their actions? And does he believe that people of color, even if born in the United States, are not true Americans?
But even if they were all foreign-born — so what? Just as many, if not most, Americans would be horrified to be blamed for their current president and his actions — his family separations, admiration for dictators and so on — individuals hailing from other countries are individuals who deserve to be judged on the content of their character. Once they are citizens, they are citizens, indistinguishable from those born into citizenship. In its dehumanizing essence, this episode recalls Mr. Trump’s insistence that the United States should attract more immigrants from Norway than “shithole” countries in Latin America and Africa.
was sentencing day
on state charges
for the neo-Nazi who rammed his car into a group of counterprotesters in Charlottesville,
a reminder of
another low moment
in Mr. Trump’s presidency. But his Sunday
among the most despicable comments from any president in recent memory — with the only competition
coming from other comments by Mr. Trump
. Sadly, the poison by now is no more surprising than the
of the Republican Party.