Former Republican Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney took to Twitter to respond to President Donald Trump's alleged "s**thole" remarks.
Romney, the 2012 Republican nominee for president, wrote a tweet on Martin Luther King Jr. Day in which he criticized Trump's alleged comments questioning why immigrants are coming to the U.S. from "s**thole countries," reports Politico.
"The poverty of an aspiring immigrant's nation of origin is as irrelevant as their race," Romney wrote. "The sentiment attributed to POTUS is inconsistent w/ America's history and antithetical to American values. May our memory of Dr King buoy our hope for unity, greatness, & 'charity for all.'"
Romney has been a vocal critic of Trump since the 2016 presidential campaign. Recently, Romney criticized the president's endorsement of Senate candidate Roy Moore, an accused child molester.
Trump came under fire for remarks he reportedly made during a White House meeting, calling Haiti, El Salvador and countries in Africa "s**thole countries." The comments were widely seen as having racist overtones.
The president responded to the controversy, denying he made the comments at all.
According to The Guardian, when asked what he would say to people who think he is a racist, he responded, "No, no, I'm not a racist. I am the least racist person you have ever interviewed, that I can tell you."
The White House has not denied that Trump made the remarks, but Republican senators, including Sens. Tom Cotton of Arkansas and David Perdue of Georgia, said they do not recall the president using the vulgar term.
Democratic Rep. John Lewis of Georgia, who marched with civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. in Selma, Alabama, in 1965, said in response to Trump's comments, "I think he is a racist," reports The Guardian.
"I don't think there's any way that you can square what the president said with the words of Marking Luther King Jr. and what he said about Dr. King," Lewis said. "It's unreal. It's unbelievable. It makes me sad. It makes me cry."
Patrick Gaspard, the former U.S. ambassador to South Africa under President Barack Obama, shared his thoughts regarding the president's comments. Gaspard was born to Haitian parents in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
"Methinks he doth protest too much," Gaspard said. "In the legion of absolutely outrageous things that this man has said and done, what occurred this past week has just tipped us over into a place of near insanity and this seems to be a textbook case of conduct unbecoming the commanding officer of the United States of America. The disparaging remarks come in the wider context of Trump dismantling the foreign policy apparatus of the U.S.”
Gaspard, who has not been replaced in South Africa, added: "These kind of sentiments are disorienting for our partners. They’re not entirely sure what to make of the American identity at the beginning of the 21st century."