By Alana Abramson | TIME
After the crowd at President Donald Trump’s rally chanted “send her back” in reference to a foreign born Congresswoman, Republicans on Capitol Hill largely condemned the rhetoric. But they also defended the President himself, saying Trump, who only days earlier had tweeted similar sentiments, was not at fault.
Speaking at a rally in North Carolina Wednesday evening, Trump criticized Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar for previous comments she made about Israel that he characterized as anti-Semitic. As the crowd began chanting “send her back,” the President stood silent on the podium. Just days earlier, he shared similar thoughts on Twitter, telling Omar and three of her colleagues who were all born in the United States to “go back” to their countries of origin.
Wednesday’s rally chants were immediately rebuked by both sides of the aisle, albeit more strongly by Democrats. Although Republicans had largely remained silent after the President’s racist tweets, some now immediately jumped into the fray to denounce the crowd at the rally. “I deeply disagree with the extreme left & have been disgusted by their tone. I woke up today equally disgusted – chants like “send her back” are ugly, wrong, & would send chills down the spines of our Founding Fathers,” Illinois Rep. Adam Kinziger wrote on Twitter. “This ugliness must end, or we risk our great union.”
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