- Mark Wilson/Getty Images
- President Donald Trump reportedly asked why the US is “having all these people from shithole countries come here?” during an immigration meeting Thursday.
- Some within the White House reportedly believe the comment will resonate with Trump’s supporters.
President Donald Trump prompted an outcry on Thursday after a bombshell report surfaced that he had referred to Haiti and African nations as “shithole countries” during a meeting on immigration with lawmakers.
But some White House staffers are unfazed by the remark because they believe it will resonate with Trump’s supporters, CNN’s Kaitlan Collins reported.
Instead, they predicted that Trump’s base will be receptive to the comments in the same way they were when the president repeatedly attacked NFL players who knelt for the national anthem, according to CNN.
In the exchange, which was first reported by The Washington Post, Trump asked, “Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” referring to immigrants in the US who received Temporary Protected Status on humanitarian grounds.
Trump then reportedly suggested the US instead accept immigrants from nations like Norway, whose prime minister he met with on Wednesday.
The White House has not denied that Trump made the comment, and even appeared to defend the overall sentiment in a statement released by deputy press secretary Raj Shah.
“Like other nations that have merit-based immigration, President Trump is fighting for permanent solutions that make our country stronger by welcoming those who can contribute to our society, grow our economy and assimilate into our great nation,” the statement said.
“He will always reject temporary, weak and dangerous stopgap measures that threaten the lives of hardworking Americans, and undercut immigrants who seek a better life in the United States through a legal pathway.”