GOP Rep. Mia Love calls Trump's 's---hole' comment racist: 'I can't defend the indefensible'

Rep. Mia LoveLudmya (Mia) LoveFormer GOP lawmaker: Trump's tweets have to stop Congressional Women's Softball team releases roster The 31 Trump districts that will determine the next House majority MORE (R-Utah) on Sunday said she couldn’t defend President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive landmark moments of testimony to Congress Lindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight Democrats sharpen their message on impeachment MORE for reportedly calling Haiti, El Salvador and African nations “shithole countries,” but said his comments shouldn’t distract lawmakers from passing immigration reform.

“I can't defend the indefensible. You have to understand that there are countries that struggle out there. But their people, their people are good people and they're part of us. We're Americans,” Love, the first Haitian-American elected to Congress, said on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

Trump last week reportedly asked lawmakers why the U.S. was accepting so many immigrants from “shithole countries" like Haiti, El Salvador and African nations. He suggested the U.S. should instead should take in more immigrants from countries like Norway.

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Asked on Sunday if she thought Trump's comments were racist, Love hesitated before saying "yes."

“I think at this point we can’t look to Washington, we can’t look to the president to tell us how to behave, how to feel. We have to be respectful. We are responsible for who we are and how we behave,” Love said.

Shortly after Trump’s remarks were reported, Love called on Trump to apologize. She reiterated that message on Sunday, and said the White House reached out to her for a meeting.

She also suggested that if a more diverse group of lawmakers were in the room at the time, Trump may not have made the same comments, pointing to backlash from other Republicans like Rep. Carlos CurbeloCarlos Luis CurbeloProgressive Latino group launches first incumbent protection campaign The Memo: Bad polls for Trump shake GOP Anxious GOP treads carefully with Trump defense MORE (Fla.)

“I don’t know if those comments would’ve been made if I were actually in the room. There are so many people that really care about this issue, [Rep.] Will HurdWilliam Ballard HurdRetirements pose threat to cybersecurity expertise in Congress Democrats challenge election laws in battleground states Republicans, Democrats brace for first public testimony in impeachment inquiry MORE [R-Texas], Carlos Curbelo, people on both sides of the aisle that should’ve been in that room talking about DACA,” Love said, referring to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. 

Trump announced last year plans to rescind DACA, which allows certain immigrants who arrived in the U.S. illegally as children the ability to stay and work here without fear of deportation. 

Lawmakers have been working on a long-term fix for the Obama-era program, but Trump rejected a bipartisan proposal last week.

“The worst thing that could happen is not getting something done on immigration. We have to do our job,” Love said Sunday.