During a news conference on Thursday, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders doubled down on President Donald Trump’s comments about MS-13 gang members who are in the country illegally.
Trump referred to MS-13 members as “animals” during a public meeting with California elected officials and law enforcement on Wednesday.
“We have people coming into the country, or trying to come in — and we’re stopping a lot of them — but we’re taking people out of the country,” Trump said.
“You wouldn’t believe how bad these people are. These aren’t people. These are animals. And we’re taking them out of the country at a level and at a rate that’s never happened before. And because of the weak laws, they come in fast, we get them, we release them, we get them again, we bring them out. It’s crazy.”
As noted by The Daily Wire, numerous media outlets claimed that Trump called all immigrants “animals” and not “people, despite the fact he was referring to MS-13 gang members and criminal illegal aliens.
On Thursday, Sanders shot back at a reporter who asked what the president meant “when he said immigrants are not people, they’re animals.”
“I just want to ask you because so many people in the country have been talking about it the last 24 hours,” the reporter began.
“What did the president mean when he said some immigrants are not people, they’re animals?”
“The president was very clearly referring to MS-13 gang members who enter the country illegally and whose deportations are hamstrung by our laws,” Sanders replied. “This is one of the most vicious and deadly gangs that operates by the motto of rape, control and kill.”
Sanders then excoriated the media, saying they were free to defend the dangerous gang if they want to.
“If the media and liberals want to defend MS-13, they’re more than welcome to,” she said.
Sanders then went a step further, saying she believed the president’s term didn’t go far enough to describe these “horrible, disgusting people.”
“Frankly, I don’t think the term that the president used was strong enough,” she said. “MS-13 has done heinous acts. It took an animal to stab a man 100 times and decapitate him and rip his heart out. It took an animal to beat a woman they were sex trafficking with a bat 28 times, indenting part of her body. And it took an animal to kidnap, drug and rape a 14-year-old Houston girl.
“Frankly, I think that the term “animal” doesn’t go far enough and I think that the president should continue to use his platform and everything he can do under the law to stop these types of horrible, horrible, disgusting people.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.