Lightfoot denounces Trump's tweets telling congresswomen to 'go back' to where they came from

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Mayor Lori Lightfoot is denouncing President Donald Trump's tweets targeting four congresswomen of color. But she declined to weigh in on whether the president is racist, saying it isn't constructive.

The move comes as the president doubles down on his attacks against the representatives, denying that he or his tweets were racist.

"You look at what they've said, I have clips right here. The most vile, horrible statements about our country, about Israel, about others," the president said. "It's up to them. They can do what they want. They can leave, they can stay."

His remarks follow his weekend tweets directed at Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.

The president told the four congresswomen known as "The Squad" to go back to the country they came from. Three of the women were born in the U.S., while one is a Somali refugee who's now an American citizen.

"Well it's really unfortunate and it shows a level of ignorance that the president has exhibited on other occasions," said Mayor Lightfoot. "It speaks to a pattern the president has shown of really belittling women in general, but particularly women of color. I'm glad that there has been a significant pushback, as well there should be."

Trump also defended his comments on Twitter Tuesday ahead of a vote by the House of Representatives on a resolution condemning the president's tweets.

Trump tweeted: "Those tweets were not racist. I don't have a racist bone in my body!"

Republicans were coming to his defense.

"Our opposition to our socialist colleagues has absolutely nothing to do with their gender, with their religion or with their race. It has to do with the content of their policies," said Republican Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming.

"I believe this is about ideology, this is about socialism versus freedom," said Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, the current House Minority Leader.

The four targeted congresswomen are standing their ground.

"If he doesn't like us, then that means he doesn't like Minnesota, that means he doesn't like the people of Michigan, that means he doesn't like my constituents in the Bronx and Queens, that means he doesn't like the Americans who sent us here," said Ocasio-Cortez.

There were also calls for civility on both sides.

"From the president, to the speaker, to freshman members of the House, all of us have a responsibility to elevate the public discourse," said Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell, of Kentucky. "Our words do matter."

McConnell also said that the president is not a racist.

The Democratic-led House voted 240-187 in favor of condemning Trump's tweets on Tuesday evening, the Associated Press reported.
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