WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump on Sunday stated disparaging comments he made a few illustrious African-American lawmaker and his Baltimore district weren’t racist and, without citing any proof for his claim, he known as the congressman a racist.

“If racist Elijah Cummings would middle of attention more of his vitality on serving to the moral of us of his district, and Baltimore itself, presumably progress can even merely be made in fixing the mess that he has helped to procure over decades of incompetent management,” Trump stated in a tweet.

Trump had attacked Cummings, a Democrat in the Residence of Representatives who has lengthy been a champion for civil rights, in a assortment of tweets on Saturday, after the lawmaker criticized prerequisites at U.S. products and services housing migrants alongside the Mexican border.

In a put up on Twitter, Trump known as Cummings’ district “disgusting, rat and rodent infested.”

“No human being would favor to are residing there,” he stated.

The tweets drew pointed responses from Democrats, who stated the comments were racist, a designate Trump denied on Sunday.

“There is nothing racist in declaring it seems that what most of us already know, that Elijah Cummings has done a dreadful job for the of us of his district, and of Baltimore itself,” he stated in a assortment of posts on Twitter.

Cummings’ office did now not today acknowledge to a search files from for commentary on Trump’s newest tweets. In a tweet on Saturday responding to Trump’s initial barrage, Cummings stated: “Mr. President, I’m going residence to my district on each day basis. Every morning, I rep up, and I’m going and strive against for my neighbors. It is a long way my constitutional responsibility to conduct oversight of the Govt Branch. But, it’s a long way my true responsibility to strive against for my constituents.”

Cummings is the chairman of the Residence Oversight Committee, which voted 23-16 alongside party lines on Thursday to challenge subpoenas to White Residence officers, at the side of Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump and son-in-laws Jared Kushner as section of a probe into that you may per chance think violations of govt file-maintaining authorized guidelines.

In an interview on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” acting White Residence chief of workers Mick Mulvaney stated on Sunday that he understood why Trump’s comments can even merely be perceived as racist nonetheless he stated the president used to be speaking hyperbolically.

Trump’s remarks echoed a the same assault he made in January 2017 against every other murky lawmaker and icon of the civil rights movement, John Lewis. He moreover now not too lengthy in the past instructed four minority women lawmakers to “return and help fix the completely broken and crime infested places from which they came from.”

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“I fully think it’s important to call it out for what it’s a long way, which is racism,” Democratic presidential candidate Julian Castro instructed “Face the Nation.”

    “There’s a pattern here,” he added. “That’s how he thinks he acquired in 2016 and that’s how he thinks he’s going to soak up 2020.”

Cummings represents Maryland’s 7th congressional district, which in step with 2010 census records used to be 54.6% murky, had a median family profits of $51,018, a figure above the median profits for the nation as a total.

Reporting by Lesley Wroughton; Extra reporting by Jan Wolfe; Enhancing by Tim Ahmann, Andrea Ricci and Chris Reese