Immediately after news broke that President Donald Trump reportedly said immigrants from Haiti and African nations come from “sh*thole countries,” pundits exploded in outrage — but many fell short of calling the president himself a racist.
Please stop saying the president HAS racist views. President Donald Trump IS a racist. Stop pussyfooting around on this. @CNN
— Kevin M. Levin (@KevinLevin) January 11, 2018
Below are five reporters and pundits who danced around naming the racist elephant in the Oval Office.
1. CNN White House correspondent Jim Acosta
“The president seems to harbor racist feelings about people of color from other parts of the world," @acosta just said on CNN.
— Michael Calderone (@mlcalderone) January 11, 2018
Known for his snide wit, CNN’s Jim Acosta said the president appears to “harbor racist feelings about people of color from other parts of the world,” but did not continue to flat-out charge him with being racist.
2. CNN political analyst Jeffrey Toobin
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) January 11, 2018
Author and political analyst Jeffrey Toobin went so far as to say Trump “has racist views,” and claimed many “dance around that issue,” but did not refer to the president himself as a bigot.
3. CNN chief national security correspondent Jim Scuitto
“This is very much in character with how President Trump views people of color.” – @jimsciutto on CNN
— Quinn Sutherland (@ReelQuinn) January 11, 2018
While Scuitto’s observation that the “sh*thole” comment was “very much in character with how President Trump views people of color,” he did not name him a racist outright.
4. The University of New Hampshire’s Seth Abramson
It'll take *years* to recover from what this man is doing to America's reputation and the integrity of its government.
He's publicly calling other countries "shitholes" now. https://t.co/BtGIY2OHGt
— Seth Abramson (@SethAbramson) January 11, 2018
Abramson’s takeaway on Trump’s racism that informs his immigration and foreign policy stances is how bad it hurts the United States — and not how it proves further the president is a bigot.
5. This group of lawmakers
"Breathtakingly offensive." Lawmakers rebuke reported Trump "shithole countries" comment pic.twitter.com/bpx64D4YSZ
— Cristiano Lima (@viaCristiano) January 11, 2018
According to lawmakers who spoke to POLITICO’s Christiano Lima, Trump’s comments are “breathtakingly offensive,” “unforgivable” and “ignorant” — but not purely racist.