Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) is likely to catch heat for comments she made during general speeches Monday evening.
“Mr. Speaker, my position against this president and his administration is clear,” she said. “I oppose this president. I do not honor this president. I do not respect this president.”
Continuing, Waters outlined her issues with President Donald Trump’s administration:
“He has disrespected the office and offended so many people across this country and around the world with his disgusting and indecent rhetoric against women, the black community, Muslims, immigrants, and disabled Americans.
Mr. Speaker, it is not just the African-American community who will lose under this president. It is everyone who isn’t a millionaire or billionaire that stands to lose under this administration. I will continue to oppose him and fight him every step of the way.”
Waters is far from the first member of Congress to attack Trump, or any sitting president for that matter, but the next part of her speech brought her into territory that other critics of the president have tended to avoid.
“Many African-Americans have paid a huge price fighting for justice and equality in this country, have died for it. I don’t have to call the names of Martin Luther King and all the others,” she said. Waters continues by declaring:
“When we fight against this president and we point out how dangerous he is for this society and for this country, we’re fighting for the democracy. We’re fighting for America. We’re saying to those who say they’re patriotic but they turned a blind eye to the destruction that he’s about to cause this country: You’re not nearly as patriotic as we are.”
The context of Waters’ comments matter, and it’s important to note that she was contrasting the patriotism of Trump supporters with the patriotism of African-Americans who fought in wars on behalf of the United States. Nevertheless, her decision to criticize the president’s supporters in addition to simply targeting the president will likely draw the ire of many members of the president’s base.
At the end of her speech, Waters also indicated that although she objects to Trump’s actions, the Congressional Black Caucus is still willing to work with the president.
“And for those members of the black caucus representing our leadership who went to meet with him, they have laid out to him all of this, what our care and concerns are all about,” she said. “But in the final analysis, we really don’t expect anything from him.”