Tags: Donald Trump | Immigration | jeff flake | trump comments | shithole countries | after meeting

Sen. Flake: Heard About Trump's Words on Haiti Before They Went Public

(ABC News/ "This Week")

By    |   Sunday, 14 Jan 2018 12:37 PM

Sen. Jeff Flake said Sunday he wasn't in a contentious meeting on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program last week, but he does believe President Donald Trump called Haiti and African nations "s***hole countries,' as he'd heard a description of the meeting before the words were made public.

"I was in a meeting directly afterward where those who had presented to the president our proposal spoke about the meeting," the Arizona Republican told ABC "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos. "They said those words were used before the words went public. That's all I can tell you, is I heard that account before the account went public."

Meanwhile, work will continue on reaching a DACA compromise, Flake said, who backs the deal presented to Trump by Sens. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., last week during the contentious meeting with Trump.

"This is a bipartisan deal," said Flake. "There are three Democrats. Three Republicans. We're working now to add more Republicans to that list. And we will have more this coming week. This is a bipartisan deal with both sides having compromised."

So far, however, Trump has rejected the deal, tweeting on Friday that Democrats are not "interested in life and safety" and that has made DACA take "a big step backwards."

"The Dems will threaten 'shutdown,' but what they are really doing is shutting down our military, at a time we need it most," he said.

Trump also tweeted on Sunday that he wants "people coming into our country who are going to help us become strong and great again, people coming in through a system based on merit," while eliminating the Diversity Immigration Visa Program.

"In our compromise, we get rid of the Visa lottery program," said Flake. "We allocate those Visas to a couple of different programs, like temporary protected status. The discussion of that program and another is what gave rise to the language that was used."

Flake said there is agreement among both parties to end the Visa program, as well as chain migration.

"If we want a comprehensive bill, I'm all in," said Flake. "But we can't do a comprehensive bill that will take months and months to negotiate before the March 5 deadline."

He said he also takes "big issue" with Trump's claim that Democrats are not moving forward on the legislation or negotiating in good faith.

"I have been negotiating and working with the Democrats on immigration for 17 years," said Flake. "On this issue, on DACA, or on the Dream Act for a number of years, the Democrats are negotiating in good faith. We're trying to come forward with a compromise. You'll see that this week."

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Sen. Jeff Flake said Sunday he wasn't in a contentious meeting on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program last week, but he does believe President Donald Trump called Haiti and African nations "s***hole countries,' as he'd heard a description of the meeting...
jeff flake, trump comments, shithole countries, after meeting
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2018-37-14
Sunday, 14 Jan 2018 12:37 PM
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