Rep. John Lewis Condemns Trump’s Tweets on House Floor: ‘I Know Racism When I See It’


Civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) called for his congressional colleagues to support a resolution condemning President Donald Trump’s recent racist attacks against four minority congresswomen while speaking on the House floor on Tuesday.

“I rise with a sense of righteous indignation to support this resolution. I know racism when I see it. I know racism when I feel it,” began Lewis, who organized anti-segregation marches in Washington, D.C. during the 1960s and met civil rights leaders Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks as an activist in his teens.

“At the highest level of government, there’s no room for racism. It sows the seeds of violence and destroys the hopes and dreams of people,” he added. “The world is watching. They are shocked and dismayed because it seems we have lost our way. As a nation, as a proud and great people. We are one Congress. And we are here to serve one house … The American people.”

Lewis continued by specifically addressing Trump’s demands for minority Democratic Reps. Ilhan Omar (MN), Ayanna Pressley (MA), Rashida Tlaib (MI), and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) to go back to the countries they “originally came from,” even though all but one, Omar, was born in the U.S.:

“Some of us have been victims of the stain, pain, and hurt of racism. In the ’50s and ’60s, segregationists told us to go back when we protested for or they told ministers, priests, rabbis, and nuns to go back. They told the innocent little children seeking just an equal education, to go back. As a nation and as a people we need to go forward and not backwards. With this vote, we stand with our sisters, three were born in America and one came here looking for a better life. With this vote, we meet our moral obligation to condition hate, racism, and bigotry in every form.”

“Do what is right, what is fair, and what is just,” he concluded.

The resolution to condemn Trump’s racist comments was passed on Tuesday night in a largely divided, partisan vote, shortly after Lewis gave the emotional speech on the House floor. Though, four Republicans did vote for the resolution.

Trump’s latest racist controversy was triggered after he launched a wild Twitter attack against the four congresswomen of color over the weekend, writing that the “‘progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe, the worst, most corrupt and inept anywhere in the world (if they even have a functioning government at all), now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States, the greatest and most powerful Nation on earth, how our government is to be run.”

Watch above, via C-SPAN.

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Caleb Ecarma was a reporter at Mediaite. Email him here: Follow him on Twitter here: @calebecarma