At least four congressional Democrats are boycotting President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address scheduled for Jan. 30 after the president reportedly said African nations were “shithole countries” in a closed-door meeting at the White House last week.
Democratic Congressman Dr. Raul Ruiz, who represents California’s 36th Congressional District, will not be joining them, his office confirmed on Thursday for Uken Report.
“The Congressman will be attending the State of the Union, just like he did for the joint session last year,” said Press Secretary Hernan Quintas.
Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., and Rep. Pramila Jayapal, D-Wash., said they will not attend the president’s address after Trump made the derogatory comment during a bipartisan meeting with lawmakers on immigration.
Rep. Maxine Waters, who represents California’s 43rd Congressional District and is a Ranking Member of the House Financial Services Committee, released a statement in response to Donald Trump’s comments about immigrants from Haiti. Haiti is one of the countries Trump allegedly referred to as “shithole countries” in an Oval Office meeting on Jan. 11, during which he also allegedly said, “Why do we need more Haitians?” and “Take them out.”
During a previous Oval Office meeting last June, Trump complained that 15,000 immigrants had come from Haiti, and they “all have AIDS.”
“Donald Trump has proven that there is no limit to his hatred, bigotry, and vulgarity,” Waters said in a prepared statement. “As a longtime friend of Haiti who has traveled to the country numerous times, I am especially appalled by Trump’s racist and ignorant comments about Haiti. It is most unfortunate that these hateful comments came on the eve of the eighth anniversary of the tragic January 12, 2010, earthquake in Haiti, which killed between 220,000 and 300,000 people and displaced 1.5 million people from their homes.”
You can read her full statement HERE.
Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson, who represents Florida’s 24th District, also issued a statement on why she will not attend President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address:
“For the first time since I began serving in the U.S. House of Representatives, I will not be attending the president’s State of the Union address,” Wilson said in a prepared statement. “I have no doubt that instead of delivering a message of inclusivity and an agenda that benefits all Americans, President Trump’s address will be full of innuendo, empty promises, and lies.”
Calling it a form of “nonviolent resistance, Washington’s Seventh District Rep. Pramila Jayapal, also issued a news release to announce that she will boycott Trump’s State of the Union Address.
“I join other distinguished members, including Rep. John Lewis, in refusing to dignify a president who has used the platform of the Oval Office to fan the flames of racism, sexism and hatred—most recently with his vulgar condemnation of Haiti and other African countries,” Jayapal said in a prepared statement.”
Lewis, the longtime Georgia congressman and civil rights icon who marched with Martin Luther King Jr., said on “This Week” Sunday, “In good conscience, I can not and will not sit there and listen at him as he gives the State of the Union address.”
Lewis further criticized the president, calling him “a racist.”