Utah Rep. Mia Love, the only Haitian-American in Congress, called on President Donald Trump to apologize after he reportedly referred to Haiti, El Salvador and countries in Africa as “s***hole countries" during an Oval Office meeting.
In a statement, the Republican Congresswoman called the comments “unkind, divisive, elitist, and fly in the face of our nation’s values.”
Love’s parents, Mary and Jean Maxine Bourdeau, emigrated from Haiti in the 1970s. The Congresswoman said they “worked hard, paid taxes, and rose from nothing to take care of and provide opportunities for their children.”
She called on the President to “apologize to both the American people and the nations he so wantonly maligned.”
On a recent visit to Haiti, I saw firsthand the impact of #HumanTrafficking on families and children. Grateful for the work that Utahns and Utah based groups are doing. Let's keep the awareness on this global issue a priority. #HumanTraffickingAwarenessDay #utpol pic.twitter.com/I4jVB1qgEN
— Rep. Mia Love (@RepMiaLove) January 11, 2018
Trump reportedly made the comment in a bipartisan meeting with Congressional lawmakers to discuss immigration. The Washington Post reported that he became frustrated when lawmakers suggested restoring protections for immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador, and African countries as part of an immigration deal.
“Why are we having all these people from s***hole countries come here?” he asked, before suggesting he preferred the U.S. take in immigrants from countries like Norway.
In a statement on Twitter, Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch said he wants an explanation from the President about his comments.
“Part of what makes America so special is that we welcome the best and brightest in the world, regardless of their country of origin,” Hatch’s office tweeted.