Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s nephew called President TrumpDonald John TrumpKey takeaways from the Arizona Senate debate Major Hollywood talent firm considering rejecting Saudi investment money: report Mattis says he thought 'nothing at all' about Trump saying he may leave administration MORE> "racially ignorant and racially uninformed" on Friday, one day after reports surfaced that Trump referred to Haiti, El Salvador and various African nations as "shithole countries."
"I don't think the Present Trump is a racist in the traditional sense as we know in this country," Isaac Newton Farris Jr. told CNN.
"I think President Trump is racially ignorant and racially uninformed. But I don't think he is a racist in the traditional sense," he continued.
Farris Jr. went on to say Trump's remarks were "another example of him [Trump] speaking without knowing the facts."
Farris Jr. made the comments after participating in a White House event on Friday, during which Trump signed a proclamation honoring civil rights icon Martin Luther King Jr. The event comes as the U.S. prepares to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday.
Trump has denied reports that he referred to some immigrants as coming from "shithole countries" during a heated Oval Office meeting on Thursday. In a series of tweets early Friday, he said that was not the language he used.
Never said anything derogatory about Haitians other than Haiti is, obviously, a very poor and troubled country. Never said “take them out.” Made up by Dems. I have a wonderful relationship with Haitians. Probably should record future meetings - unfortunately, no trust!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018
The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used. What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made - a big setback for DACA!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 12, 2018
However, the president's reported comments have garnered outrage on both sides of the political aisle.
Sen. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinDurbin opposes Saudi arms sale over missing journalist Noisy democracy, or rude people behaving like children? Kavanaugh tensions linger after bitter fight MORE> (D-Ill.), who was present during the Oval Office meeting, confirmed that Trump made the comments.
“I cannot believe in this history of the White House, in that Oval Office, any president has ever spoken the words that I personally heard our president speak yesterday,” Durbin said early Friday.
Gov. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), who is one of Trump's political allies, also blasted the comments, calling them "absolutely wrong."
“If this report is true, it is absolutely wrong to say or think this,” the governor said. “I do not think this way, nor do I agree with this kind of sentiment. I represent Florida, and we are an amazing melting pot where over 250 languages are spoken.”
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