During a Sunday appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” Republican Sen. David Perdue of Georgia iterated his claim that President Donald Trump did not use the word “shithole” to refer to Haiti, El Salvador and some African nations during a White House meeting with lawmakers.
In an interview with host George Stephanopoulos, Perdue said the comment attributed to Trump in The Washington Post was a “gross misrepresentation.”
“I’m telling you he did not use that word, George. And I’m telling you it’s a gross misrepresentation. How many times do you want me to say that?” Perdue asked after Stephanopoulos pressed him on the subject.
Perdue was one of several senators who attended an Oval Office meeting with Trump on Thursday during which the president reportedly referred to El Salvador, Haiti and some African nations as “shithole countries.”
“Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?” Trump reportedly asked.
Perdue insisted on Sunday that Trump did not use the language reported by the Post.
“The gross misrepresentation was that language was used in there that was not used and also that the tone of that meeting was not contributory and not constructive,” Perdue said.
Republican Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, who was also present in the meeting, issued a statement Friday in which he claimed that he said his “piece” to Trump regarding the comment, although Graham has uttered a similar remark in the past.
“Following comments by the President, I said my piece directly to him yesterday. The President and all those attending the meeting know what I said and how I feel. I’ve always believed that America is an idea, not defined by its people but by its ideals,” Graham said.
Sen. David Perdue flatly denies Trump said “shithole countries” pic.twitter.com/3VdKgNMmVO
— Axios (@axios) January 14, 2018