Booker slams DHS secretary for not remembering Trump’s comments

Posted: Updated:
WASHINGTON -

Sen. Cory Booker harshly criticized Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen Tuesday for saying she couldn’t recall President Donald Trump using a certain vulgarity to describe African countries.

Booker became emotional and visibly angered when Nielsen was taking questions from the Senate Judiciary Committee about Trump’s comments.

"You don't remember? You can't remember the words of your commander in chief?  I find that unacceptable,” Booker said.

Nielsen had been in a closed-door meeting on immigration last week in which Trump was said to have not only used a derogatory term for Haiti and Africa, but reportedly also asked if the U.S. could get more immigrants from countries like Norway.  

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Another person in that meeting was Sen. Dick Durbin who posed the questions in the committee hearing.

"What do you remember the president saying about immigration from Africa to the U.S.?” Durbin asked Nielsen.

“I don't specifically remember a categorization of countries in Africa,” she replied.

This is when Booker chimed in about why he found her answer unacceptable and why he was so angered by the president’s comments.

"I had tears of rage when I heard about this experience in this meeting and for you not to feel that hurt and that pain and to dismiss some of the questions of my colleagues…when tens of millions of Americans are hurting right now because they're worried about what happened in the White House, that’s unacceptable to me,” Booker said.

The president was questioned directly as to whether or not he only wanted immigrants from mainly Caucasian countries, to which he replied, “I want them to come in from everywhere.”

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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