Michael Tesler, poli sci, explains in The Washington Post

During Donald Trump’s campaign and presidency, there has been an ongoing debate about whether Trump’s words and even the president himself should be called “racist.”

This debate has intensified in the past weeks. First, Trump tweeted that four nonwhite congresswomen should “go back” to where they “originally came from,” even though three of them were born in the United States.

And then, on Saturday, Trump, who has often used infestation imagery to describe places where minorities live, tweeted that Democratic Rep. Elijah Cumming’s Baltimore district was a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess” and a “very dangerous & filthy place.” Cumming’s district is actually relatively affluent and well-educated, but it is majority black, and Cummings himself is also black.

Although many politicians, political commentators, news outlets and even a few longtime defenders of the president have called Trump’s words “racist,” Republican leaders have generally closed ranks and rejected this characterization.

Read on, courtesy of The Washington Post: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/07/30/republicans-reactions-trumps-tweets-are-part-long-american-history-denying-racism/?utm_term=.5a8cfb18ab4d