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Fox personalities blast Trump’s remarks

Several Fox News personalities, contributors and correspondents criticized President Trump on Monday for a series of tweets telling four progressive, nonwhite congresswomen to “go back” to other countries.

Fox’s chief White House correspondent John Roberts confronted Trump in person about the attack, asking the president during an impromptu news conference on Monday, “Does it concern you that many people saw that tweet as racist, and that white nationalist groups are finding common cause with you on that point?”

“It doesn’t concern me at all because many people agree with me,” Trump responded. “And all I’m saying is if they want to leave, they can leave.”{mosads}

“Fox & Friends” host Brian Kilmeade, who often expresses support for the president, said on the network’s “Outnumbered” that Trump’s attacks were “a mistake” but argued that the president was trying to make them the controversial faces of the Democratic Party.

“In one way, the president saying ‘Why did he weigh in the way he did?’ It makes him the story. The other thing is he is underlying it. He’s saying ‘Democrats, these are your leaders, these are your rock stars, good luck,’ ” he said.

Co-panelist Harris Faulkner called the attacks “an old trope that has been used against people of color” but also accused the congresswomen of “pick[ing] on a man who likes to fight.”

“Those women have picked on a man who likes to fight. That man has leaned on some less-than-presidential rhetoric and all of it is toxic, none of it furthers the conversation, and what is the conversation we are trying to have right now?” Faulkner said. “That some people are more American than other people? Is that what we’re arguing about right now?”

The remarks came after Trump started a firestorm of controversy Sunday when he tweeted that ” ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen” should “go back and fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came.”

The tweets appeared to be directed at Ocasio-Cortez and Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), all of whom are U.S. citizens. Only Omar, who came to the U.S. as a refugee from Somalia, was born outside the U.S. The comments have widely been condemned by the Democratic Party as racist.

Fox News political analyst Jessica Tarlov compared the tweets to Trump’s promotion of the racist “birther” conspiracy theory that former President Obama was not born in the United States.

“The focus needs to be on the President of the United States of America using racist tropes against people of color in this country and that is why his approval rating can never get past a certain level,” Tarlov said on “America’s Newsroom.” “We keep going back to this: the Central Park Five, birtherism. It is unacceptable.”

Most Fox contributors and personalities stopped short of calling Trump’s statements racist. Fox’s Brit Hume tweeted that the president’s attacks were “nativist, xenophobic, counterfactual and politically stupid.”

“The Next Revolution” host Steve Hilton also blasted the remarks on Twitter, writing that the sentiment, “totally undermines legitimate arguments on patriotism, secure borders [and] immigration control” as well as Trump’s own signing of criminal justice reform legislation.

“you’re the President not Alf Garnett,” Hilton added, referencing the British sitcom character who served as the basis for “All in the Family”’s Archie Bunker. 

Republicans largely have remained silent about Trump’s comments since he first made them Sunday.

Some Senate Republicans, however, have spoken out, including Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who called on Trump to delete his tweet, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), who said “there is no excuse for the president’s spiteful comments,” and Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), the only African American Republican in the Senate, who said Trump used “unacceptable” and “racially offensive” language in his remarks.

A number of Democrats, including 2020 White House hopefuls, have condemned Trump’s tweets and his defense of the remarks “racist” and “un-American.” Congressional Democrats, including Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) blasted Trump for his comments and condemned Republicans for their silence on the issue.

Tags Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Ayanna Pressley Barack Obama Charles Schumer Donald Trump Ilhan Omar Lisa Murkowski Nancy Pelosi Rashida Tlaib Susan Collins Tim Scott

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