President Donald Trump resumed his criticism of a prominent black congressman from Baltimore, saying on Tuesday that people there are living in “hell” and that it’s a “corrupt city.”
Trump said billions of dollars have been stolen and called on the lawmaker, Democratic Representative Elijah Cummings, to investigate the city. Cummings is chairman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, which has been focused on investigating Trump and his administration.
The Trump-instigated feud has prompted accusations that president is deliberately going after a black lawmaker and a majority-black city as an appeal to his base. He has spent the past few weeks attacking Cummings and other minority lawmakers and a well-known black activist and commentator, Al Sharpton, prompting accusations that the president is racist.
“I am the least racist person there is anywhere in the world,” Trump said to reporters at the White House on Tuesday.
Trump spoke ahead of the Democratic presidential debates in Detroit on Tuesday and Wednesday, set in another US city where blacks constitute the majority of residents.
“It’s a corrupt city, there’s no question about it,” Trump said of Baltimore. He said Cummings has “iron hand” on city.
On Monday, Trump said on Twitter: “Baltimore, under the leadership of Elijah Cummings, has the worst Crime Statistics in the Nation. 25 years of all talk, no action!