Top Missouri newspaper condemns GOP's 'shameful silence' on Trump's 'racism'

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch editorial board on Thursday condemned Missouri's Republican delegation and Republicans across the U.S. for their “shameful silence” about President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump watching 'very closely' as Portland braces for dueling protests WaPo calls Trump admin 'another threat' to endangered species Are Democrats turning Trump-like? MORE’s attacks on a group of minority congresswomen.

The board wrote that Trump telling the women to "go back" where they came from was "racist to its core," arguing that "those who don’t call it out enable it."

"Yet of the almost dozen Republican members of Congress who represent Missouri and southern Illinois, precious few have made any public statements at all about it, clearly fearful of upsetting Trump’s base," the board wrote, before noting how some GOP lawmakers have responded to the president's latest comments. 

The board particularly took issue with Rep. Jason SmithJason Thomas SmithHouse passes sweeping budget, debt limit deal Top Missouri newspaper condemns GOP's 'shameful silence' on Trump's 'racism' Main Street businesses need permanent tax relief to grow MORE's (R-Mo.) defense of Trump's comments, saying that the congressman should read the president's tweets again.

But overall, the board voiced the most outrage over what it calls the "cowardly, mute void" of GOP lawmakers from the region. 

"Given the bright red line that Trump has so enthusiastically crossed this week, the question of whether to continue supporting him — either assertively or through inappropriate silence — is no longer merely an indicator of party loyalty or policy priorities; it has become a test of courage, character and fundamental decency," the board concludes. "And these elected officials have failed it."

The editorial comes days after Trump sparked an uproar by telling four minority congresswomen to go back to the "crime infested places" they came from before speaking out about the U.S. government.

Trump also claimed that the Democrats — Ilhan OmarIlhan OmarMaher rails against anti-Israel boycott movement: 'A bulls--- purity test' for Democrats Pelosi hits Trump, Netanyahu for 'weakness' amid tensions over Omar and Tlaib Ocasio-Cortez brushes off Trump tweet claiming she is 'fuming' over Tlaib, Omar attention MORE (Minn.), Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezJoseph Kennedy mulling primary challenge to Markey in Massachusetts The latest victims of the far-left's environmental zealotry: Long Islanders Ocasio-Cortez brushes off Trump tweet claiming she is 'fuming' over Tlaib, Omar attention MORE (N.Y.), Rashida TlaibRashida Harbi TlaibMaher rails against anti-Israel boycott movement: 'A bulls--- purity test' for Democrats Pelosi hits Trump, Netanyahu for 'weakness' amid tensions over Omar and Tlaib Ocasio-Cortez brushes off Trump tweet claiming she is 'fuming' over Tlaib, Omar attention MORE (Mich.) and Ayanna PressleyAyanna PressleyOcasio-Cortez brushes off Trump tweet claiming she is 'fuming' over Tlaib, Omar attention Trump finds consistent foil in 'Squad' Sen. Susan Collins: Israel should allow Omar, Tlaib to visit MORE (Mass.) — were "from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe." Omar is the only one among the four to be born outside the U.S. They are all U.S. citizens.

The comments were followed by a North Carolina rally crowd on Wednesday repeatedly chanting "send her back" as Trump singled out Omar. 

The House on Tuesday voted to condemn Trump's remarks as racist. Four Republicans, as well as Independent Justin AmashJustin AmashLawmakers blast Trump as Israel bars door to Tlaib and Omar House Democrats targeting six more Trump districts for 2020 Sanford headed to New Hampshire amid talk of challenge to Trump MORE (Mich.), joined every Democrat in approving the resolution. 

Trump has stood by remarks about the lawmakers, saying that they should leave the U.S. if they aren't happy. He said Thursday that he disagreed with the chants that rally attendees engaged in.