Democrats fire back on Trump's comments on congresswomen, GOP defends president

Democrats and Republicans agree to disagree over Trump's latest comments on Democratic congresswomen of color.
27:58 | 07/16/19

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Transcript for Democrats fire back on Trump's comments on congresswomen, GOP defends president
Everybody into the break your mind ABC's Devin Dwyer and Washington great to have you with us today facing a wave of criticism. That he's a racist both from Democrats members of his own party former aides even the husband. Of a top White House advisor president trump today was defiant declaring he's not a racist. And doubling down in his attacks on those four democratic congresswoman he says should go back to where they came from. And if they're not happy. We're Spago. Whoever they want. And our Karen Travers White House correspondent was in the room with president trump at that cabinet meeting. She asked members of the cabinet whether anyone in the room was uncomfortable by what she heard. What they heard from president trump and none of them would say. As much but Republicans on the hill a short time ago rallying around the president Republican leader Mitch McConnell. As says he doesn't think the president's are racist and said others are to blame here is Mitch McConnell. Back onerous. And I think the tone of all of us it is not good for the country. But it's coming from all different. Ideological points of view that's the point. To single out any segment of I think is a mistake. Even this kind of rhetoric. From a whole lot of different sources all across the ideological spectrum and our country. A lot of other people to blame Mitch McConnell said in this racial. Debate up on Capitol Hill that did not sit well with a number of the women at the center this firestorm. Our Serena Marshall up on Capitol Hill caught up with Alexandria our cost Joseph Cortez of New York. She wasn't happy. Needs and nearing its. Yeah. When Mears points. Fellow American. Learn anything. Spring. These members go. There. Country. Every parent. Part of defiant Alexandria across sea of Cortez want to bring answering a Marshall now she's still up on Capitol Hill she was. Working the halls of congress today Serena the members of the house are preparing to vote tonight. On a resolution. Condemning president from defending those four women tell us about the resolution and are any Republicans. In support this thing. Yet DeVon that resolution was introduced by AM aimed at democratic member of congress and they are many to condemn the president's remarks back. Tear question are any Republican Dennis aboard that big question mark ADT's reach out to every single congressional Republican office and only 42 of them. Actually at spoke out against the president's comments but and Evan you gonna vote against the president's comments on that condemnation resolution. In fact it'll be a question of it and have them do send. Then Republicans on capitol held is that the mid give minority whip Steve Gleason actually encouraging. Republicans are not going to vote for the resolution and you heard Mitch McConnell right there eating condemn those remarks side there in fact. Blaming every one. For the president's comments and saint both sides have a lot to blame but really isn't gonna come back to politics the president. Want to make this a fight between Canada and at progressive on that left side of the Democratic Caucus vs those central as an athlete trying to do is trying to lump those. Four women as part of the extreme part of the party and say because the Democrats have rallied around those women against the president's remarks. That's what you gonna go up against and funny money. And everyone is gone back into their political corners over this once or in a Marshall thank you so much for your reporting. And chasing down Alexander costs you Cortez want to bring in now a democratic member of the house the only. Congresswoman of color running for president in 20/20 tell C Gabbert of Hawaii joins us now from Capitol Hill congresswoman thank you so much. For joining us want to get your reaction to this resolution and M what you hope this vote tonight. We'll accomplish. Well first of I just want to be really clear about the devastating consequences of president trumps racist comments. First of all stoking these these racist feelings and and stoking religious bigotry in this country. Tearing apart an already divided country for his own. Political game is beneath the office of the presidency and undermines the very values and principles. Of our democracy. Seconds his using the platform of the presidency. Essentially to help people who are critical of him are complaining about things are this or that. That they should quote unquote go home. Threatens our first amendment rights are freedom of speech you know we think about who we are as Americans what is it that makes us. Americans what is it that makes our country it is those values and principles enshrined in our constitution. And our declaration of independence. That says all men are created equal. You know endowed with these inalienable rights by our creator every single. One of Los and so that's the statement that I think that this resolution. Is seeking to make two to remind. The country to remind this president about who we are as Americans and that we will not stand for racism or. Bigotry forcing means anyone who seeks to squash free speech. And Republicans. Have been quite critical of the resolution perhaps unsurprisingly a number of them saying that this is selective outrage by Democrats. One from campaign advisor told me earlier that there wasn't a vote of condemnation against you on Omar when she. A city anti Semitic things that were backed up a David duke what what do you say even that that that congress is feeding into the practice now of. Of condemning some people by boat and not others when it comes to. Their behavior in their language. Court we're talking about the president. Of the United States of America. The person in this country who is in charge of this incredible responsibility. To be the president and commander in chief to serve and keep safe Americans all across this country regardless of race ethnicity. Religion political party ideology agreed disagreed. The present a United States needs to view leader who is uniting our country was bringing people. Together was able to disagree without being disagreeable keeping at the forefront. That vision that our founders have for this country a government truly of by and for the people now president trump has done the exact opposite that values in the statements that he is pushing forward. The sentiments that he is stoking our anti American they go against these very few true American values. It's do you think that those sentiments in those values that the president is pushing. A change your calculus on impeachment. This forward democratic women last night at a press conference said that all of this. Emboldens their argument that an impeachment proceeding needs to be open do you agree with them on that. I don't I think that would only further divide it terribly divided country. It further emboldened me and I conviction about why I'm running for president because I believe that. We need to defeat Donald Trump and funny money. And the voters of this country. Need to make that decisive statement. That we will stand for all Americans we will stand for our freedoms you stand for freedom of speech freedom of religion freedom to assemble freedom of the press. And we will defeat Donald Trump. In November 2 points money. Chelsea grabber Democrat of Hawaii the only congress and men of color running for office on this vote tonight thank you so much for joining us from capital programs and thank you. And this president's comments reverberating across the country including in America's major diverse cities we caught up a short time ago with the mayor of Chicago the third largest city. In the United States mayor Lori Lightfoot is the city's first black mayor also the first openly gay mayor and we asked her to respond about how the president's comments are reverberating there. Well it's really unfortunate and it shows a level of ignorance of president has exhibited on other occasions. I think that the response has been appropriate. Obviously these are women who are congress people on there here in the United States native born on three of the four. How many others on someone who came over as a refugee. I'm but I think it speaks to a patterns the president shown. I'm really belittling women in general but practically women of color and I'm glad that there has been a significant. Push back as well there should. PM. What more should Democrats do to respond to this in your view I mean it does seem that the president at least politically wants to be having this debate he sees. Some sort of advantage in having this issue of race front and center. Well look I think that the president unfortunately has done a lot of things in the course of his presidency that are aimed at dividing us and the things that we have to focus on. I'm as leaders and particularly is Democrats is making sure that we're speaking to. The values of who we aren't. And we're talking to the issues that I'm really are important everyday citizens on issues about incumbent security Bob making sure the people have great access to. Affordable health care and in my city I'm spending a lot of time making sure that I'm providing hope and optimism. On and support to immigrant communities all over the city of Chicago. You wrote an open letter to the president yesterday was published in the Washington Post about his threatened. Mass. Ice deportation raids is that this didn't seem to materialize in Chicago what do you make of what this episode was all about. Well look but what whether they materialize or they don't. The damage has been done. I have people in my city particularly young people who are worried every day that they leave their house when they're not they're gonna come back and see her parent. Her grandparents people in their in their home. So the fifth. I'm has done a lot of damage it's traumatize people but the one good thing that's come out of this is and our city is united. We are standing shoulder to shoulder with our Brothers and sisters in the inning immigrant and refugee committee on community and people were. And a heightened since awareness of what their rights are. Think you've ordered the police department there to cut off access to ice from its databases. To stop cooperating with ice have you seen any impact. On cooperation between an immigrant communities and the police is that is there real fear there that that's going to be diminished. Well I think it what we've been trying to do all along is make sure that we build better relationships. Between the commute and police in the communities they serve I think the impact immediate impact. Arm on shining eyes out from our database is not allowing our police department to participate in any of the immigration raids. Is it's limited ice is reached the reality is the numbers of ice agents in the homeland. Is actually fairly limited and they rely upon local police departments to help extend their reach. We're cutting that off and we're saying we stand with our immigrant. On neighbors our friends our family members and any concern though that that could conserve be considered coddling of criminals or. Helping some of these more dangerous. And I don't immigrants evade justice none out because the if you look at the people that the president has talked about. These are people who came here in search of a better life. There are fleeing poverty there were freeing up plot oppressive governments and they were fleeing violence. And they immigrants and refugees in the city Chicago. Just as it is all across the country contributed mightily to the quality of life and our neighborhoods the stability of our neighborhoods and to our local economy. These are not criminals they are people are contributing. Any significant way to our city. I when I want to ask you very quickly detect couple questions about the debt twenties when he democratic primary well under way first wanted to. Get your take on mayor Pete booted judge your fellow mayor their debt to the south what do you making his candidacy so far and I don't he struggled to attract support from African American. Voters what what would you advise his campaign did you did it to help counter that improve that. Well look I I'd met mayor Pete I. Appreciate everything that he's doing and saying he's obviously caught fire. I don't need to give him advice but look I think anybody who's running. To be the president United States Hoss to have a specific. Urban plan. The cities are where things are happening. Mayors all over this country are doing amazing thing to tackle tough challenges the people face. And we have the ability to impact people's lives. More than any other elected official up or down. That that the ballot if you will. So listening to what's happening in the cities making sure that we're meeting the needs of people on our diverse communities that's release an important thing and I hope that. The democratic nominee aspirants to the nomination. Really focus on having an urban redevelopment and renewal plan because that's what's gonna move the country following. And what do you make of this dispute between polling front runner Joseph Biden and Pamela Harris of California over busing and the former rest presence comments about segregationist party farm that people trying to make sense of that debate well look I. I think both of these are really strong candidates and you know obviously Biden's been in on an office firm a long time he's got a significant body. Off of work as a representative Collin Harris comes and offers I think a very fresh fought and personal perspective. And challenging issues of race that she's not afraid I'm to talk about that I think is set frankness and candor that ultimately is gonna win the day. Fog in many of the un democratic nominees are are doing down to speak you do literally just keep going Joseph Biden is fair. Look I'm not gonna get into whether it's fair or isn't that a obviously. I'm you we now know from the polling that it resonated with a lot of people were watching and paying attention. And these are dug busting saga. Cannot in American history but it clears it played out on a lot of cities fog is one of controversy still and it's something that has to be reckoned with. Are they see in the mayor life Ford to Democrats at the only ones watching that debate the president's campaign also following Joseph Biden come away Harris. A short time ago we had our term campaign spokesman mark water here in the briefing room to ask him about that busing debate and more tickle. Now what the president. It falls office. Does he support federally mandated busing when he weighed into this debate really gets into it when it gets into the policy decisions itself that it specifically those go through the White House since all the policy decisions are made you know at the White House as president but I can tell you what the president does support is making sure that. That all students have access to choice and the best schools possible that's why. You see the president really leaning in on providing quality options for four students and Sasha those at the lower economic strata. Our Joseph Biden in Kabul Harris are two biggest competitors right now I think from the campaign standpoint we actually don't look at any of the Democrats as being any different from each other. They're having to endorse such radical ideas such as the green new deal. And other radical positions just to get through this primary that whenever they do you come through the primary we know if a few things are gonna be sure. One they're gonna be broke because they'll have spent all their money going through the primary to they'll be broken and bruised from going through that primary. And then they will have endorsed those that from many of those policies that are just so out of touch. What its shift gears and the focus of the president's message in Los couple of days obviously a lot of talk about racist tweets that the president. Sent out he's been defending those tweets you've got white supremacy groups and bracing in this celebrating. The comments it has been. Exactly what they wanted you've got Anthony scare in which he's saying this is racist you've got Kelly commerce husband of Republican. Lawyer saying this is racist to the core and it doesn't. Doesn't seem to bother to. Campaign all as the president has said he is not racist he's calling out the policy differences that he believes with these radical members and when it comes to white supremacists I'll tell you that. Win they were celebrating some of the things that one of the members of the of the squad were saying I didn't see anybody actually out there talking about how David duke was was praising in endorsing the anti semitism that was being shown by one of those members so. Again it's picking and choosing here what we're choosing to be outraged by. Or ask your lesson the president said that's her very own Barbara Walters during the last campaign when you or are working with him let's take listeners from point fifty what words would you use to describe. Donald Trump well I mean I give it a positive vibes I've always had great imagination. I've had great success with money but what they say is. Is he nice person and I think actually I am a nice person but I think the thing the will surprise people obviate unifier I think I'll bring people together. And that includes blacks. And whites and everything. I think people will come together and say he's. Of that promise I think you can when you when you look at some of the results when you look at the results that we have we we see African American at a historic unemployment at a historic low. Women unemployment and a 65 year low lowest unemployment in history for Latino Americans he's delivering on the promises. There's also a number of unfinished business items from his first campaign the wall was still under construction under way. You have to trade deals US and CA hasn't gone through congress say you have starts at some green shoots with North Korea but obviously a lot of work to be done their present. Said during his Republican. Convention acceptance speech that I alone can fix while you remember. Did did he over promise is there any danger there to voters as you head into next phase of this campaign looking back on that and while waiting sack. He said he could fix it but we've got some of these big items big ticket items from his campaign he has completed. While and I think it's actually it's actually going to provide a platform for him to be able to say why he needs to be reelected so you can continue to work on that job. It changing changing Washington DC the culture of Washington DC or even having the a lot of these project takes a while to do things in government. Things get a mark potter a lot to follow as this campaign heats up but despite the debate over the president's tweets. And racism the fray the White House is pushing ahead. On their top economic priorities today national economic. Council director Larry Kabul convene a group summit really of nine different state leaders to talk with the go to a crisis jobs. Infrastructure of Larry Kudlow came by the briefing room. Tell us the state of the economy can look. Mr. Kudlow thanks so much for joining us you've got to a summit today with local leaders from nine states certainly a lot of good economic news to celebrate on employment 200000 jobs. Created last month what's the biggest threat to the economy right now is you see it. Weller and by the way we had Morgan is this morning. Big number and retail sales manufacturing. And very low inflation on import prices so I will repeat. We are in a long durable prosperity cycle. I would tremendous job creation and low unemployment across the board every category. You use in assisted durable growth right now that fed chief just last week said he has some concerns about the impact of the trade war about. The slowing of the global economy. Are you confident that that trade war isn't going to get us off course in the next few months. Well look we are negotiating with China we're back at the table. I think that's a good thing it's. Not coming easily but there are constructive talks going on I sent my big hit you think good that we there it's possible we may never reach a deal with China. Well I don't know it I don't want to predict one way the other. We may get Dili may not get a deal the president said several times he's quite comfortable where we are. Our economy is booming their economy is slumping very badly so we'll see how this plays out. Colleague of yours and ally the White House Peter feel founder of PayPal billionaire investor said this morning that he thinks that. China has been working are closely with Google Google needs to be investigated for treason he says a president. Apparently supports that do you think that Kubel. Has acted tree in a treasonous way with its partnership with the Chinese. I am not aware. Of any facts on that now Peter tales a good man to bring guy great odds burner. Is a strong supporter of the administration great help to us. But I also keep in touch with gogel. And the president have goal comes around frequently to talk. I am not aware many of these charges. Amendment that go look themselves themselves have denied it. I go by way is not operating in China presently. And I think it would be very difficult for them of these they think it would be difficult for them I don't think they're in cahoots with the Chinese military but look. Peter tell we will look into the matter. President said that I think this morning we'll have a look at this thing and see whether we can clarify it. But at this point in time I must say my friend Peter 'til I'm a little bit skeptical. Well what I ask you real quickly about those debt ceiling negotiations under way up on Capitol Hill for. The average folks out there that debt ceiling is like the nation's credit card you got a raise it to keep paying the bills how damaging. Do you think it would be to the US economy. Director called vote if a deal isn't reached if we were to default in some way. Well the what did we do not want to do. As secretary ammunition is that time again and I concur we do not why going to. US dollar. Is the strongest most dominant currency it is the international currency it is international global money. We gonna wreck that that would do great damage to our economy. Capital would leave the US. And we would find ourselves probably a pretty bad slump so let's not tempt fate. Now is confident a deal can be reached in the next a couple of weeks I think cell. I've talked to secretary. I think he's playing this on the optimistic side I think speaker Pelosi understands the importance of the debt ceiling. Whether it goes alone or whether it's part of the budget deal I think they're making pretty good progress on. The file that I've just got to ask you if you're concerned at all about what the president tweeted over the weekend about those four. God democratic congresswoman so much has been said last 24 hours does that bother you at all his words on those about those when. But first let us say it's it's way outside my way. That second they now say as you know he'd waited it and he has been explaining it in the last 24 hours or so. I'd known presidents from. Over twenty years and I'll simply say this this is my personal view. There is not a racist bone in his body that is my view. And our thanks again to director combo for coming down on the briefing room look today finally. Here in a briefing room a look back at fifty years ago today to that historic launch of the Apollo eleven mission. That put in American on the moon our senior our chief transportation correspondent David Curley got a closer look at the soup that Neil Armstrong wore. On that incredible day. On a table any museum lab. Possibly the most iconic suit in the world. I performed oral programs. All of. Quietly. Neil Armstrong was on the mood for less than three hours but his suit still carries the dust of that historic walk there is moon dust embedded here. In this suit. The Leonard us is embedded right there on the surface and that that tells its and you know history. Representing Apollo. It took a kick starter campaign in two years to preserve Armstrong suit 21 layers of material. Some of it invented for this space suit but this was not the work of an aerospace company. Yes try on the new Playtex at your favorite store that's right here the woman's garment company Playtex won the contract to build the Apollo species I remember. Girl's malls and I'm good dose your robes expandable fabrics things that could give a little bit of basic. Fabric of a space your words there are in place that they had that technology. So an agreement is team put together a film to sell NASA on their design all those layers painstakingly sewn together. The soul of the over boot that left those footprints there are designed but their first full systems tests was the moonwalk. So while the world was excitedly glued to their TV sets watching man on the moon. There was an anxious nervous man and mission control sunny Ream wanted the walk to and worried something might fail. When Buzz Aldrin. His talking about kangaroo hops and starts hopping around the moon you what do you think of it back and let him. We've already uber successful. We can declare success I don't care how many. Craters boards Woodson looked at didn't back and saw and he finally did Armstrong's suit now preserved for us to see up close. Something that touched the moon. And so many of us who do you watch people look at the suit. I will watch people's. I love to see people's reactions it's very emotion all. So the suit now on display here at the air and space museum you can't get much closer to a piece of history like this Neil Armstrong got on live television after his moonwalk. And thanks the folks who built what he called his mini space craft. The kept him alive on the moon and I have to tell you DeVon to be back close. To something as iconic as this was really remarkable to see the dust still and it's available for anybody who wants to come to the air and space museum here in Washington. Seven. Turner thanks to David Curley for that thank you for watching us today here in the briefing here we're here every day 3:30 PM eastern time on ABC news live. We plane at 530 in 630 download BBC news apple leave you today with a look back. On that historic launch fifty years ago today of Apollo eleven we'll see tomorrow. Be right. Where. Here right. Karen point he had enough McMahon. The flyers made a wrong. Flames shooting up into this job.

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