Democratic Texas Rep. Veronica Escobar told CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Tuesday that President Donald Trump needed to apologize before he came to El Paso.
Escobar, who has promised to join those protesting the president’s visit to El Paso in the wake of the weekend’s mass shooting, joined Cuomo to discuss the tone of Trump’s comments and her district’s expected response. (RELATED: Trump Says He Stands With America In Condemning El Paso Shooting. Here’s How Twitter Users Responded)
“You were invited to be part of the delegation that would go with the president here,” Cuomo began. “You said I want to talk to him first. Why?”
Escobar explained that she had wanted to talk to Trump prior to his visit in order to determine whether he really meant what he had said about condemning white supremacy and whether he understood the impact his words could have.
“I don’t know that he gets it, Chris. His words have incredible power,” she said. You walk through all of these families, you walk through to this memorial, you’ll see people in pain. I talked to a veteran earlier to said I’m being made to seem as though I’m not American. The language that he uses … it’s because he doesn’t see Mexicans, hispanics — He doesn’t see us as human.”
Cuomo noted that Escobar, after learning that she would not have the chance to speak with Trump prior to the visit, decided not to be a part of it at all. He asked whether she felt that was the right decision to make with regard to her constituents, some of whom were probably glad to see the president making the effort to reach out to victims.
“I do. I do. We’re going to have 22 funerals, Chris. 22 funerals in this community. And the words that have dehumanized us are still hanging over us,”Escobar replied.
“You need to hear this president apologize for the things he’s said.”
“And to acknowledge that they were wrong,” she added. “And to take them back.”
“If he doesn’t?” Cuomo prompted.
Escobar’s response was adamant: “As far as I’m concerned, he should not be here until he does that.”