Durbin subject of Trump’s tweets after DACA meeting

Samantha Handler, Assistant City Editor

U.S. Sen Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) became the target of President Donald Trump’s latest Twitter tirade on Monday after confirming last week that the president called some nations “shithole countries.”

Durbin said on Twitter last Friday that he could not believe the “hate-filled, vile, and racist” words Trump said about some African countries during a bipartisan meeting on immigration reform last week. Trump denied the claims, and said he is not a racist.

Senator Dicky Durbin totally misrepresented what was said at the DACA meeting,” Trump wrote on Twitter on Monday. “Deals can’t get made when there is no trust! Durbin blew DACA and is hurting our Military.”

According to Politico, Durbin said that Trump’s words were “so awful and so impactful” for so many people that he felt compelled to speak out after the president denied the comment. He challenged the president to “prove” he is not racist on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.

Alex Morgan, communications director for the Democratic Party of Evanston, said Durbin has shown how hard he has worked to advocate for immigration reform and tried get legislation protecting the DACA provision on the president’s desk.

I’m proud to have Dick Durbin as my senator and I think everyone else on my board would say the same,” Morgan said.

Trump’s remark has caused a rift on Capitol Hill as Democrats and Republicans try to reach a deal on immigration and avoid a government shutdown. U.S. Sens Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) and David Perdue (R-Ga.) disputed Durbin’s account.

But the dispute has spread into Illinois politics as well.

In a morning radio interview on Monday, Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner refused to call out both Trump and former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke. The governor’s campaign spokesman later said Rauner believes Duke is a racist and that Trump’s comment was “unacceptable.”

State Sen. Kwame Raoul (D-Chicago), a candidate for Illinois attorney general, released a statement Tuesday saying Rauner’s inability to call Trump a racist is “pretty damning.”

Rauner’s refusal to call former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke a racist on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day is flat out Trumpian,” Raoul said in the statement. “Martin Luther King, Jr. taught us that our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

Morgan said he believes Evanston democrats appreciate Raoul standing up against Trump as a descendent of Haitian immigrants, but it ultimately will not sway anyone’s opinion when the group votes to endorse candidates on Sunday.

“We appreciate that he, as one of our candidates for statewide offices, is out there on the frontlines calling out the governor and calling out Trump,” Morgan said.

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