As President Trump continues to take criticism over the term "s***hole countries," Ari Fleischer says the White House should focus on substance and policy.
“Why are we having all these people from s***hole countries come here?” Trump said in a bipartisan meeting, according to multiple people in the room. The statement was confirmed by Fox News.
The remarks drew a firestorm of criticism, including accusations that the president is a racist and speculation that this could stall talks on immigration reform.
Fleischer, Fox News contributor and former White House press secretary under President George W. Bush, said on "Outnumbered Overtime" that Trump's blunt, politically incorrect talk has helped shake up Washington, D.C., but it's not always helpful to diplomacy and getting agreements done.
He said that Trump should focus on the substance of the immigration reform bill and making sure it includes funding for policies he has long advocated for, including a border wall and enhanced border security.
"Today's a day for the White House to try to focus on substance, while the press will focus entirely on process," Fleischer said. "But deservedly so. This is what happens if presidents say things that cross a line and go too far."
He pointed out that Trump has so many successes he can point to, but sometimes he changes the subject from those to controversies over his own behavior.
"When you're doing that well and you have that many accomplishments, don't you want people to be talking about your accomplishments?"
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