Emmer: No place for 'send her back' in politics

U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer disagrees with the "send her back" rhetoric.
Three-term GOP U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer took questions from constituents at a Town Hall style meeting in Ramsey, Minn., on Jan. 22, 2019. Emmer said Thursday he disagreed with the "send her back" rhetoric at a Trump rally, but didn't go so far as to criticize President Trump.
Tim Nelson | MPR News

Minnesota U.S. Rep. Tom Emmer said Thursday there's no place in politics for rhetoric that says "send her back" to a member of Congress.

A crowd at President Trump's rally Wednesday night in North Carolina chanted "send her back" as Trump criticized Minnesota DFL U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar. It was an echo of a tweet he sent out earlier this week.

"I didn't watch the rally last night, sorry, but there's no place for that kind of talk. I don't agree with it," Emmer said in answer to a question at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast broadcast by C-Span.

Still, Emmer, a Republican who represents the state’s 6th District, didn’t directly criticize the president, instead suggesting that Trump has garbled the message he intended to send.

"There's not a racist bone in this president's body,” he said. ”What he was trying to say, he said wrong. What he was trying to say is that if you don't appreciate this country, you don't have to be here. That goes for every one of us. It has nothing to do with your race, your gender, your family history. It has to do with respecting and loving the country that has given you the opportunities that you have."

Emmer is heading up Republican efforts to regain control of the House next year. Omar is scheduled to hold a meeting about Medicare for All proposals in Minnesota Thursday night.

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