Trump says there's 'nothing racist' in attacks against Cummings

President TrumpDonald John TrumpO'Rourke: Trump driving global, U.S. economy into recession Manchin: Trump has 'golden opportunity' on gun reforms Objections to Trump's new immigration rule wildly exaggerated MORE defended his recent attacks on Rep. Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsCan the Democrats unseat Trump? Democrats slam alleged politicization of Trump State Department after IG report Senior Trump officials accused of harassing, retaliating against career State Dept. employees MORE (D-Md.), saying there is "nothing racist" in his tweets. 

"There is nothing racist in stating plainly what most people already know, that Elijah Cummings has done a terrible job for the people of his district, and of Baltimore itself. Dems always play the race card when they are unable to win with facts. Shame!" Trump tweeted Sunday.

Trump tweeted Saturday about Cummings and the city of Baltimore, which falls in the congressman's district, calling the city "disgusting" and "rodent infested," comments that were widely denounced as racist by Democrats.

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He continued to double down on his criticism Sunday. 

About 40 minutes after defending his initial attack, Trump followed up with a tweet calling Cummings "racist." Trump did not include an explanation of why he was describing the African American congressman as racist.

"If racist Elijah Cummings would focus more of his energy on helping the good people of his district, and Baltimore itself, perhaps progress could be made in fixing the mess that he has helped to create over many years of incompetent leadership. His radical 'oversight' is a joke!" Trump tweeted.

Trump similarly tried to fend off accusations that his tweets targeting a group of four congresswomen were racist.

In a tweet directed at freshman Democratic Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezRepublicans plot comeback in New Jersey Joseph Kennedy mulling primary challenge to Markey in Massachusetts The latest victims of the far-left's environmental zealotry: Long Islanders MORE (N.Y.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibTlaib suggests boycotting Maher show after he calls anti-Israel boycott movement 'bullsh-t purity test' The Memo: Trump pushes back amid signs of economic slowdown Tlaib's grandmother to Trump: 'May God ruin' you MORE (Mich.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarTlaib suggests boycotting Maher show after he calls anti-Israel boycott movement 'bullsh-t purity test' The Memo: Trump pushes back amid signs of economic slowdown Tlaib's grandmother to Trump: 'May God ruin' you MORE (Minn.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyJoseph Kennedy mulling primary challenge to Markey in Massachusetts Ocasio-Cortez brushes off Trump tweet claiming she is 'fuming' over Tlaib, Omar attention Trump finds consistent foil in 'Squad' MORE (Mass.), all of whom are women of color, Trump said the lawmakers should “go back” to the “totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.” Only Omar was born outside the U.S, and all four are U.S. citizens. 

Trump vehemently pushed back on accusations that the tweets directed at the lawmakers were racist.

Later, Trump’s mention of Omar at a rally led the crowd to break into a “send her back” chant. Trump said he tried to quell the chants, but he waited 13 seconds to speak and continued his speech only after the chant had died down on its own.

The House voted to condemn Trump’s “go back” tweets in a vote largely along party lines. Few Republicans have publicly denounced Trump’s attacks on U.S. lawmakers of color as racist.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold NadlerJerrold (Jerry) Lewis NadlerGOP memo deflects some gun questions to 'violence from the left' House Democrats urge Trump to end deportations of Iraqis after diabetic man's death French officials call for investigation of Epstein 'links with France' MORE (D-N.Y.) said Sunday that a resolution condemning Trump’s racist tweet about Cummings “wouldn’t be a bad idea,” but he was unsure if one would be introduced.