There was an uproar Thursday evening after multiple sources claimed that President Trump made a derogatory comment about immigrants from Third World countries during a closed-door meeting. Now Trump is denying it, but some conservatives are defending him if it’s true.
Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Illinois), among others, says Trump made the comment during a meeting about a bipartisan compromise for the Deferred Actions for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, according to ABC 7 Chicago.
Durbin described the words he said Trump used, saying, "The largest group's El Salvadoran, the second is Honduran and the third is Haitian. When I mentioned that fact to him, he said, 'Haitians? Do we need more Haitians?' "Then he went on and he started to describe the immigration from Africa that was being protected in this bipartisan measure. That's when he used these vile and vulgar comments, calling the nations they come from, 's---holes.' The exact word used by the president — not just once, but repeatedly.”
Trump took to Twitter early Friday morning to defend himself.
But many people believe Trump could have said what Durbin said he did. Conservative commentators Matt Walsh and Ben Shapiro have responded based on the assumption that Trump did.
“I think it's stupid to assume that ‘s---hole countries’ is a racial slur,” Christian commentator Walsh wrote on Twitter soon after the news broke. “I also think it's stupid to let Trump off the hook for his immigration betrayal because you're so impressed with his politically incorrect language. In summary, everyone is stupid.”
Walsh also pointed out the hypocrisy of outraged liberals, who used crude language and wore vulgar costumes during the Women’s March the day after Trump’s inauguration. He added that the Clintons did far more vulgar things while in office and claimed that many people would characterize Haiti the same way Trump reportedly did.
Walsh wrote that “I think the implication is that it produces people who are more likely to contribute to our crime, poverty, and welfare problems. Which is true, of course, and something that our immigration laws should take into account.”
He asked one of his detractors, “Do you deny that immigrants from Haiti are much more likely to end up in our prisons and on our welfare rolls than immigrants from, say, France?”
Conservative writer Shapiro weighed in more cautiously on Twitter, writing, “I’m confused how we got automatically from him saying some countries are ‘s---holes’ to the press saying he called immigrants from those countries s---. Maybe he means that, but a leap is required.”
In an interview with Fox News, Shapiro says Trump should not have waited 15 hours to deny making the controversial comments.
"If the man could just stay off Twitter and watch his mouth, his approval ratings would rise five points almost immediately," Shapiro added.
In a Daily Wire column, Shapiro leaned away from labeling Trump’s comment as racist, saying restriction immigration from certain countries “has nothing to do with ethnicity.” He just wishes Trump would clarify if he’s criticizing the miserable way those countries are run or if he’s bashing their residents themselves.
What do you think about Trump’s alleged comments? In related news, conservative commentators Tomi Lahren and Mark Dice are weighing in, too.