Mulvaney: President Is 'Right' to Put Focus on Cummings' District

Susan Jones | July 29, 2019 | 5:53am EDT
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Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) chairs the House Oversight and Reform Committee. (Photo/Screen capture)

( - President Donald Trump attacked Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) over the weekend for "saying things that are not true about the border," White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney told "Fox News Sunday."

Mulvaney went on several Sunday talk shows to defend the President's many tweets about Cummings and his Baltimore-area congressional district, including the following three tweets which set the latest controversy in motion on Saturday:

Trump tweeted:

Rep, Elijah Cummings has been a brutal bully, shouting and screaming at the great men & women of Border Patrol about conditions at the Southern Border, when actually his Baltimore district is FAR WORSE and more dangerous. His district is considered the Worst in the USA......

....As proven last week during a Congressional tour, the Border is clean, efficient & well run, just very crowded. Cumming District is a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess. If he spent more time in Baltimore, maybe he could help clean up this very dangerous & filthy place

Why is so much money sent to the Elijah Cummings district when it is considered the worst run and most dangerous anywhere in the United States. No human being would want to live there. Where is all this money going? How much is stolen? Investigate this corrupt mess immediately!

"The president is attacking Mr. Cummings for saying things that are not true about the border," Mulvaney said.

"I think it's right for the president to raise the issue of -- look, I was in Congress for six years. If I had poverty in my district like they have in Baltimore, if I had crime in my district like they have in Chicago, if I had homelessness like they have in San Francisco, and I spent all of my time in Washington, D.C., chasing down this Mueller investigation, this bizarre impeachment crusade, I'd get fired.

"And I think the president's right to raise that. It has absolutely zero to do with race."

Mulvaney pointed to Cummings' eruption at Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan at a hearing last week:

"You feel like you're doing a great job, right?" Cummings asked McAleenan, who was defending his agency's efforts to do the best it can under very difficult circumstances (which Congress refuses to address).

"We're doing our level best in a very challenging situation," McAleenan replied.

"What does that mean?" Cummings thundered. "What does that mean when a child is sitting in their own feces -- can't take a shower? Come on, man, what's that about? None of us would have our children in that position. They are human beings!" Cummings yelled.

"And I'm trying to figure out -- and I get tired of folks saying, oh, they're just beating up on Border Patrol. Oh, they're just beating up on Homeland Security. What I'm saying is, I want to concentrate on these chilren and I want to make sure they're ok..."

Mulvaney disputed Cummings' accusation that children are sittting in their own feces: "That's not right. It's not accurate," Mulvaney said, noting that "Mr. Cummings has not been to the border in recent memory, certainly not during this administration.

"And when the president hears lies like that, he is going to fight back and that's what you saw in those tweets."

Trump's first three tweets about Cummings apparently were prompted by a segment on Saturday's "Fox & Friends," in which a reporter videotaped what she called "the most dangerous (congressional) district in America."

"There is a crisis at the border," the reporter said. "There's also a crisis in Baltimore."

On Sunday, host Chris Wallace took exception to Trump's comment that "no human being would want to live there."

"Is he saying that people that live in Baltimore are not human beings?" Wallace asked.

Wallace also took exception to Trump's reference to vermin -- "a disgusting rat and rodent infested mess," were the words Trump used to describe Cummings' district.

"Infested," Wallace said. "It sounds like vermin. It sounds subhuman."

"I think you're spending way too much time reading between the lines," Mulvaney said.

Wallace tried again: "You're completely comfortable with him saying that this is a rodent-infested district and no human being would want to live there? You're comfortable with that personally?" he asked Mulvaney.

"Have you seen some of the pictures on the Internet?" Mulvaney asked. "Just this morning, from the conditions in Baltimore, Maryland. Have you seen them?"

Wallace noted that those pictures could portray "any inner city in America," and Mulvaney agreed.

"The richest state in the nation has abject poverty like that," Mulvaney said. "A state, by the way, dominated for generations by Democrats. I think it's fair to have that conversation."

Trump's orginial set of tweets about Cummings was followed by many more:

So sad that Elijah Cummings has been able to do so little for the people of Baltimore. Statistically, Baltimore ranks last in almost every major category. Cummings has done nothing but milk Baltimore dry, but the public is getting wise to the bad job that he is doing!

Someone please explain to Nancy Pelosi, who was recently called racist by those in her own party, that there is nothing wrong with bringing out the very obvious fact that Congressman Elijah Cummings has done a very poor job for his district and the City of Baltimore. Just take...

....a look, the facts speak far louder than words! The Democrats always play the Race Card, when in fact they have done so little for our Nation’s great African American people. Now, lowest unemployment in U.S. history, and only getting better. Elijah Cummings has failed badly!

Speaking of failing badly, has anyone seen what is happening to Nancy Pelosi’s district in San Francisco. It is not even recognizeable lately. Something must be done before it is too late. The Dems should stop wasting time on the Witch Hunt Hoax and start focusing on our Country!

There is nothing racist in stating plainly what most people already know, that Elijah Cummings has done a terrible job for the people of his district, and of Baltimore itself. Dems always play the race card when they are unable to win with facts. Shame!

If racist Elijah Cummings would focus more of his energy on helping the good people of his district, and Baltimore itself, perhaps progress could be made in fixing the mess that he has helped to create over many years of incompetent leadership. His radical “oversight” is a joke!

Under the Trump Administration, African American unemployment is the lowest (best) in the history of the United States. No President has come close to doing this before! I also created successful Opportunity Zones. Waiting for Nancy and Elijah to say, “Thank you, Mr. President!”

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