Four years ago, in the aftermath of rioting in Baltimore, Donald Trump criticized then-President Obama for not doing enough to address problems in the city and claimed that “I would fix it fast!” if he were president.
“President Obama, you have a big job to do,” Trump wrote less than two months before he formally launched his bid for the Republican presidential nomination. “Go to Baltimore and bring both sides together. With proper leadership, it can be done! Do it.”
The same day, Trump also wrote that “[o]ur great African American President hasn’t exactly had a positive impact on the thugs who are so happily and openly destroying Baltimore!”
The 2015 tweets were sent amid unrest in the city prompted by the death of Freddie Gray, who suffered injuries to his neck and spine while being transported in a police vehicle.
Trump’s 2015 tweets have resurfaced in the wake of his derogatory tweets over the weekend aimed at the city of more than 600,000 and at Rep. Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), whose district includes part of Baltimore.
In his tweets, Trump criticized Baltimore as a “rodent infested mess” where “no human being would want to live” and accused Cummings of doing little to address the city’s crime rate and other problems.
“So sad that Elijah Cummings has been able to do so little for the people of Baltimore,” one tweet said.
Cummings chairs the House Oversight Committee, which has been holding hearings on a number of the Trump administration’s policies and practices, including its stewardship of migrant detention centers at the U.S.-Mexico border.
As he continued Monday to attack Cummings and Baltimore, Trump also suggested that conditions in the city could improve — but he offered a different take on how proactive the president should be in bringing that about.
“The fact is, Baltimore can be brought back, maybe even to new heights of success and glory, but not with King Elijah and that crew,” Trump wrote. “When the leaders of Baltimore want to see the City rise again, I am in a very beautiful oval shaped office waiting for your call!”