Julián Castro: 'Everybody knows that the president acts like a white supremacist'

Julián Castro: 'Everybody knows that the president acts like a white supremacist'
© Greg Nash

Democratic presidential candidate Julián Castro described President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans aim to avoid war with White House over impeachment strategy New York Times editorial board calls for Trump's impeachment Trump rips Michigan Rep. Dingell after Fox News appearance: 'Really pathetic!' MORE’s recent tweets attacking progressive congresswomen as "disgusting" and "racist," but suggested that such language is par for the course for the president. 

“Everybody knows that the president acts like a white supremacist. He is a racist, he’s made that clear on so many different occasions,” Castro said Monday on CNN’s “New Day.” 

Castro, the Housing and Urban Development Secretary under former President Obama, said Trump's political strategy is centered on dividing people along racial lines.

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"The question is, what are we as Americans going to do about this," Castro said.

Castro added that it's not the first time the U.S. faced a leader "that made their whole career on being racially divisive."

"And in every generation Americans were able to rise up and push back and be better and more inclusive," he said. "That's the question for this election. Are we going to go forward to an America that continues to expand opportunity and get closer to words in our founding document? Or are we going to go backward?"

On Sunday, Trump tweeted that a group of progressive Democratic congresswomen should "go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came."

Though he did not name the lawmakers, the president appeared to be attacking Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezDemocrats ask if they have reason to worry about UK result Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez to hold campaign rallies in Los Angeles, Las Vegas Overwhelming majority say social media companies have too much influence: poll MORE (D-N.Y.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarIlhan Omar responds to 'Conservative Squad': 'Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery' Biden narrowly ahead in Iowa as Sanders surges, Warren drops: poll Sanders, Omar to hit campaign trail in New Hampshire MORE (D-Minn.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibIlhan Omar responds to 'Conservative Squad': 'Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery' House passes bill that would give legal status to thousands of undocumented farmworkers Biden narrowly ahead in Iowa as Sanders surges, Warren drops: poll MORE (D-Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyIlhan Omar responds to 'Conservative Squad': 'Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery' Sanders, Omar to hit campaign trail in New Hampshire Booker unveils legislation for federal bill to ban discrimination against natural hair MORE (D-Mass.). All four are U.S. citizens, and only Omar was born outside of the U.S. She came to the country as a refugee from Somalia at age 12.

Democrats have widely rebuked the comments as racist. Despite pushback, the president later doubled down on this tweets.