House GOP presses members to oppose resolution condemning Trump remarks as racist

House GOP leaders are urging members of their conference to vote against a Democratic-led resolution condemning as racist President TrumpDonald John TrumpGraham to introduce resolution condemning House impeachment inquiry Support for impeachment inches up in poll Fox News's Bret Baier calls Trump's attacks on media 'a problem' MORE’s remarks telling a group of minority congresswomen to “go back” to the “places from which they came.”

“House GOP leadership is formally recommending a 'no' vote on the resolution,” a spokesperson for House Minority Whip Steve ScaliseStephen (Steve) Joseph ScaliseMcCarthy on Trump's 'lynching' comparison: 'That's not the language I would use' House rejects GOP measure censuring Schiff This week: Tensions flare over Schiff, impeachment inquiry MORE (R-La.) told The Hill.


A senior GOP source said there is not a formal whipping effort since the measure is a resolution and not a bill, but that conversations are taking place with individual GOP lawmakers ahead of the vote scheduled for Tuesday evening.

Multiple sources said more than a dozen Republican members have expressed an openness to bucking party lines and supporting the resolution. 

Trump’s remarks on social media — targeting progressive firebrands Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezTlaib to join Sanders at campaign rally in Detroit AOC: Trump comparing impeachment inquiry to a lynching is 'atrocious' Former Obama official pushes back against assertion of unfair Sanders media coverage MORE (D-N.Y.), Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarTlaib to join Sanders at campaign rally in Detroit AOC: Trump comparing impeachment inquiry to a lynching is 'atrocious' 2016 Sanders surrogate Lucy Flores endorses Warren MORE (D-Minn.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibTlaib to join Sanders at campaign rally in Detroit 2016 Sanders surrogate Lucy Flores endorses Warren Ocasio-Cortez says endorsing Sanders early is 'the most authentic decision' she could make MORE (D-Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyAOC: Trump comparing impeachment inquiry to a lynching is 'atrocious' These 3 women are defining the race to unseat Trump Ocasio-Cortez mourns Cummings: 'A devastating loss for our country' MORE (D-Mass.) — has sparked a flurry of outrage.

All four women are minorities and U.S. citizens, and only one, Omar, was born outside the United States.

Democrats have blasted Trump for using a racist trope, and a handful of Republicans, including Reps. Will HurdWilliam Ballard HurdGOP lawmaker: Trump administration 'playing checkers' in Syria while others are 'playing chess' Sunday shows — Mulvaney seeks to tamp down firestorm over quid pro quo comments, Doral decision Hurd: No Ukrainian officials have told State Department 'they felt like their arms were being twisted' MORE (Texas) and Michael Turner (Ohio), have described the language as racist.

Most Republicans have stopped short of that, though many have taken to social media to state that they disagreed with the rhetoric used by the president in his attack. 

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin Owen McCarthyThe Memo: Trump 'lynching' firestorm is sign of things to come McConnell: Trump lynching comment 'an unfortunate choice of words' White House spokesman: Trump didn't mean to compare his experience with 'darkest moments' in US history MORE (R-Calif.) told reporters Tuesday he doesn't believe the president’s comments were racist, adding he believes Democrats are playing politics instead of focusing on substantive issues. He plans to vote against the resolution and is encouraging his colleagues to do the same. 

“It's all politics. If you look at the resolution itself, and you look at the rules of the House, you can't even name the resolution on the floor,” he said at a press conference.  

“If this is the case of what they are concerned most about let's go through every comment individuals have made on the other side of the aisle — are we bringing the resolution up on the floor about their comments? No,” he said.

Rep. Paul MitchellPaul MitchellTrump says his Doral resort will no longer host G-7 after backlash House Republicans voice concerns about White House's impeachment messaging Trump rails against whistleblower, 'spy' within administration MORE (Mich.) — a member of GOP leadership who spoke out against the president’s tweets on Monday — said while he disagrees with the comments, he does not plan on voting for the resolution, arguing he sees it as a political gambit aimed at dividing Republicans.

“I have expressed directly to the White House my concerns that inflammatory statements targeting anyone on the basis of their ethnicity or origin are wrong,” he said in a statement. “I view today’s Democrat resolution as yet another partisan action that does not move the ball forward.”

The resolution — spearheaded by Rep. Tom MalinowskiThomas (Tom) MalinowskiOvernight Defense: Trump's Syria envoy wasn't consulted on withdrawal | McConnell offers resolution urging Trump to rethink Syria | Diplomat says Ukraine aid was tied to political investigations Diplomat says Ukraine aid was tied to political investigations Democrat: Top diplomat's testimony on Ukraine is 'sea change' in impeachment probe MORE (D-N.J.) — “strongly condemns President Donald Trump’s racist comments that have legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color by saying that our fellow Americans who are immigrants, and those who may look to the President like immigrants, should ‘go back’ to other countries.”