Trump’s swipe did not mention anyone by name, but he was apparently referring to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.; Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn; Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D- Mich.; and Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass. All four are minorities. Trump's tweet was condemned by Democratic lawmakers as racist.
Trump wrote that these congresswomen are from places with a barely functioning government and yet “viciously” tell Americans “how our government is to be run."
Omar, who is from Somalia, is the only member of "The Squad" who was born outside the U.S.
Clinton, who lost to Trump in 2016, tweeted, “They’re from America, and you’re right about one thing: Currently their government is a complete and total catastrophe.”
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tweeted that Trump’s comments “reaffirms his plan to “Make America Great Again” has always been about making America white again.”
Republicans remained largely tight-lipped about Trump’s tweet.
Trump’s tweet appeared to be an opportunity for Democrats to put recent tensions aside and come together to call out the president. Pelosi and Ocasio-Cortez have recently been mired in a public dispute after a column last week in The New York Times.
Pelosi, in the piece, downplayed the influence that the four freshmen actually have in Congress. The comment drew criticism that eventually led to Ocasio-Cortez saying she felt Pelosi was singling out “newly elected women of color.”
Doug Heye, a Republican strategist, told The Wall Street Journal that the president is popular in his own party, hence the muted response by fellow Republicans.
“If you were a Republican member of Congress for 10 years and didn’t speak out on ‘birtherism,’ are you going to speak out now?” Heye said.
Hours after the tweet, and the subsequent uproar, Trump tweeted again, "If the Democrat Party wants to continue to condone such disgraceful behavior, then we look even more forward to seeing you at the ballot box in 2020!"