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Booker slams DHS secretary's 'amnesia' on Trump's reported 'shithole' comment

Sen. Cory Booker slammed the homeland security secretary in a speech Tuesday morning for claiming ignorance to the Pr...

Posted: Jan 17, 2018 11:44 AM
Updated: Jan 17, 2018 11:44 AM

Sen. Cory Booker slammed the homeland security secretary in a speech Tuesday morning for claiming ignorance to the President's slander of African countries.

The impassioned remarks came toward the end of an often testy oversight hearing in which Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen denied hearing President Donald Trump say the words "shithole" or "shithouse" in a White House meeting on immigration last week.

Evoking the words of Martin Luther King and the "greatest heroes in this country who spoke out about people who have convenient amnesia or who are bystanders," Booker, a New Jersey Democrat, said Nielsen was complicit in the damage done by Trump's reported insult.

"The commander in chief in an Oval Office meeting referring to people from African countries and Haitians with the most vile and vulgar language, that language festers. When ignorance and bigotry is allied with power it is a dangerous force in our country. Your silence and your amnesia is complicity," Booker said.

At times visibly upset, Booker said he was "seething with anger" and recalled the "tears of rage" he shed when he first learned of the quote attributed to the President.

"For you not to feel that hurt and that pain and to dismiss some of the questions of my colleagues, saying, 'I've already answered that line of questions,' when tens of millions of Americans are hurting right now because of what they're worried about happened in the White House, that's unacceptable to me," Booker said.

Earlier in the hearing, Nielsen had said she wanted to "move forward" from discussion of the language in the meeting after being quizzed by multiple senators.

"I have been very patient with this line of questioning" she said. "I have nothing further to say about a meeting that happened over a week ago. I'd like to move forward and discuss ways in which we can protect our country."

With similar remarks, Sen. Kamala Harris and Booker marked their arrival as the two newest -- and only second- and third-ever -- black members of the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee. Booker and Harris, also a Democrat, claimed spots on the committee earlier this month after the resignation of former Sen. Al Franken and the special election win by Sen. Doug Jones.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 513622

Reported Deaths: 10264
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34892556
DeSoto33234432
Hinds32638641
Jackson24854389
Rankin22507403
Lee16337242
Madison14922283
Jones14113247
Forrest13766259
Lauderdale12270324
Lowndes11305193
Lamar10659140
Pearl River9719244
Lafayette8846143
Hancock7836132
Washington7550169
Oktibbeha7210138
Monroe7010179
Pontotoc6990109
Warren6863178
Panola6759134
Neshoba6730210
Marshall6678141
Bolivar6445151
Union638297
Pike5928156
Alcorn5879107
Lincoln5530136
George510180
Prentiss503884
Tippah491482
Itawamba4844107
Scott477899
Adams4768125
Tate4756116
Leflore4729144
Copiah456495
Yazoo456491
Simpson4546117
Wayne443072
Covington433695
Sunflower4299106
Marion4277112
Coahoma4237109
Leake413990
Newton395781
Tishomingo383593
Grenada3777109
Stone365866
Jasper340666
Attala338290
Winston317892
Chickasaw315467
Clay312278
Clarke301195
Calhoun285049
Holmes271889
Smith269052
Yalobusha243947
Tallahatchie231553
Greene224749
Walthall221666
Lawrence218740
Perry213456
Amite209857
Webster205348
Noxubee188742
Montgomery181657
Carroll174541
Jefferson Davis173643
Tunica163239
Benton152939
Kemper145041
Choctaw136727
Claiborne134338
Humphreys131239
Franklin125529
Quitman107628
Wilkinson105939
Jefferson96934
Sharkey65221
Issaquena1957
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 845284

Reported Deaths: 16116
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1161552006
Mobile742111380
Madison53307732
Shelby38338368
Baldwin38085589
Tuscaloosa36022641
Montgomery34492781
Lee25562263
Calhoun22586518
Morgan22459406
Etowah20018517
Marshall18782316
Houston17731425
St. Clair16884358
Limestone16148218
Cullman16054303
Elmore15904294
Lauderdale14989306
Talladega14196299
DeKalb12972269
Walker12030380
Blount10717192
Autauga10517157
Jackson10162194
Coffee9417192
Colbert9342208
Dale9020191
Tallapoosa7256201
Russell708165
Chilton7018170
Escambia6957143
Covington6933195
Franklin6342108
Chambers5784142
Marion5406130
Dallas5285209
Pike5119109
Clarke484986
Lawrence4826129
Winston4780110
Geneva4642136
Bibb434094
Barbour369580
Butler3435100
Marengo342493
Monroe337266
Randolph334867
Pickens333188
Fayette330385
Henry320666
Hale318389
Cherokee317863
Crenshaw260477
Washington257052
Cleburne254460
Lamar251453
Clay250869
Macon244864
Conecuh192862
Coosa185047
Lowndes178168
Wilcox177438
Bullock152645
Perry141840
Sumter139241
Greene130245
Choctaw93228
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