Pence says Trump 'might' speak out if rally crowd chants 'send her back' again

Vice President Pence said in a new interview that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump signs bill averting shutdown after brief funding lapse Privacy, civil rights groups demand transparency from Amazon on election data breaches Facebook takes down Trump campaign ads tying refugees to coronavirus MORE "might" speak out if a rally crowd breaks into a "send her back" chant targeting Rep. Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarTrump crowd chants 'lock her up' about Omar as president warns of refugees in Minnesota Omar urges Democrats to focus on nonvoters over 'disaffected Trump voters' Omar fires back at Trump over rally remarks: 'This is my country' MORE (D-Minn.) again. 

Pence made the comments just days after a crowd in North Carolina repeatedly chanted the phrase while Trump attacked Omar, a Somali refugee who arrived in the U.S. with her family as a child. 


"The president wasn’t pleased about it, and neither was I," Pence said in an interview with CBS News White House correspondent Major Garrett. "And the president’s been very clear about that. But what we’re also not pleased about is the fact that there are four members of Congress who are engaging in the most outrageous statements." 

Garrett interjected, noting the close relationship Trump has with his supporters and how he could could impact their actions in the future. 

"This could all go away with one simple word or a phrase or something. You have a chance to say it right now. Don’t do it again. Is that your message?" Garrett asked, prompting Pence to respond that "the president was very clear that he wasn’t happy about it and that if it happened again he might, he might, he'd make an effort to speak out about it," adding that Trump has already said he would speak out.

Pence went on to argue that "that millions of Americans share the president’s frustration about sitting members of Congress engaging in that kind of reckless rhetoric, whether it be anti-Semitic rhetoric, whether it be referring to border patrol agents as running concentration camps, and the president thought it was important to stand up to them."

Trump last week sparked an uproar by telling four freshman representatives — Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezOcasio-Cortez, Warren pull out of New Yorker Festival amid labor dispute The Hill's 12:30 Report - Sponsored by The Air Line Pilots Association - Country reacts to debate night of mudslinging Ocasio-Cortez calls Trump a 'white supremacist' after debate MORE (N.Y.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibHouse Democrats slam pharma CEOs for price hikes driven by revenue, executive bonuses Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' George Conway: 'Trump is like a practical joke that got out of hand' MORE (Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyEnding the Hyde Amendment is no longer on the backburner Fauci, Black Lives Matter founders included on Time's 100 Most Influential People list Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: 'How did you do where you came from?' MORE (Mass.) — to "go back" the "crime infested places" they came from. 

The House on Tuesday voted to condemn the remarks as racist. Four GOP lawmakers, as well as Independent Rep. Justin AmashJustin AmashThe Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by JobsOhio - Trump's tax return bombshell Ron Paul hospitalized in Texas Internal Democratic poll shows tight race in contest to replace Amash MORE (Mich.), joined every Democrat in approving the resolution. 

Just a day later, a crowd in North Carolina broke out in a "send her back" chant as Trump targeted Omar. Trump said he disagreed with the chant. 

Asked why he didn't try to stop the chant, the president said that he "started speaking very quickly" to silence it. Video shows he paused for about 13 seconds after the chants began.

Trump has, meanwhile, adamantly stood by his remarks about the congresswomen, claiming on Sunday that they are not "capable" of loving the United States.