Tags: Donald Trump | Immigration | tom cotton | trump | haiti | africa comments | misrepresented

Cotton: Reports 'Misrepresented' What Trump Said at DACA Meeting

By    |   Sunday, 14 January 2018 02:21 PM

Sen. Tom Cotton insisted Sunday that he did not hear President Donald Trump use inappropriate language about Haiti, El Salvador and African countries during a meeting when talking about immigrants from those countries, and claimed that reports coming from the meeting "misrepresented" what Trump had said.

"I didn't hear it, and I was sitting no further away from Donald Trump than [Sen.] Dick Durbin was," the Arkansas Republican told CBS' "Face the Nation" anchor John Dickerson.

Durbin, D-Illinois, last week said that Trump had referred to the nations as "s***hole countries" while discussing a bipartisan immigration deal plan presented by Durbin and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.

Trump has denied using the language, but Durbin claimed that "he said these hate-filled things. And he said them repeatedly."

Cotton would not say definitively if Trump used the word, but Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., who was also at the meeting, has denied that the exact word had been used.

However, Cotton did say that the reports "misrepresented" Trump's content and tone, and accused Durbin of having a pattern of misrepresenting what happens in White House meetings" and said people "shouldn't be surprised" by what he'd said.

Cotton did admit that the meeting got heated when Durbin and Graham proposed their plan on the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and immigration.

"When Sen. Durbin, Senator Graham came to the Oval Office and proposed not to fix that system but to expand it, to create more quotas, more set-asides for other countries...the president reacted with pretty tough language, as he said, because we want to move to a system that treats people for who they are. Not where they're from," Cotton said.

Meanwhile, Cotton said he does favor skills-based immigration, like Trump does, rather than a system that allows people to come in based on family members who are already in the United States.

"If you're a doctor, or a scientist, or a computer programmer, it shouldn't matter whether you come from Nigeria, or Norway, or any other country on this earth," Cotton told Dickerson. "Today though we have a system that rewards ties of blood, ties of kin, ties of clan. That's one of the most un-American immigration systems I can imagine. That's why we're trying to fix it."

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Sen. Tom Cotton insisted Sunday that he did not hear President Donald Trump use inappropriate language about Haiti, El Salvador and African countries during a meeting when talking about immigrants from those countries, and claimed that reports coming from the meeting...
tom cotton, trump, haiti, africa comments, misrepresented
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2018-21-14
Sunday, 14 January 2018 02:21 PM
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