North Country Rep. Elise Stefanik decided against condemning President Trump’s tweets against four congresswomen of color, as the Democratic-led U.S. House voted 240 to 187 Tuesday night.
Two days after Trump tweeted that four Democratic freshmen should “go back ” to their home countries — though all are citizens and three were born in the U.S.A. — Democrats muscled the resolution through the chamber over near-solid GOP opposition.
“As I stated clearly, while I do not support the policies, rhetoric, or tactics of the far left socialist ‘squad,’ I believe the President’s tweets were unacceptable. However, today the American people witnessed unprecedented partisanship of House Democrats as Speaker Pelosi’s inappropriate words against the President were stricken from the parliamentarian’s record. This is the first time this has happened since the 1980s. The American people deserve a Congress that works on behalf of the people instead of engaging in Speaker Pelosi and far-left Democrats’ political games,” Congresswoman Stefanik said.
Four Republicans voted to condemn his remarks: moderate Reps. Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, Fred Upton of Michigan, Will Hurd of Texas and Susan Brooks of Indiana, who is retiring. Also backing the measure was Michigan’s independent Rep. Justin Amash, who left the GOP this month after becoming the party’s sole member of Congress to back a Trump impeachment inquiry.
Some rank-and-file GOP lawmakers have agreed that Trump’s words were racist, but on Tuesday party leaders insisted they were not and accused Democrats of using the resulting tumult to score political points. Among the few voices of restraint, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Trump wasn’t racist, but he also called on leaders “from the president to the speaker to the freshman members of the House” to attack ideas, not the people who espouse them.
“There’s been a consensus that political rhetoric has gotten way, way heated across the political spectrum,” said the Republican leader from Kentucky, breaking his own two days of silence on Trump’s attacks.
Hours earlier, Trump tweeted, “Those Tweets were NOT Racist. I don’t have a Racist bone in my body!” He wrote that House Republicans should “not show ‘weakness'” by agreeing to a resolution he labeled “a Democrat con game.”