WASHINGTON – Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said he agrees with President Trump that now is not the “time to be politically correct” and asked him to help secure federal funds that his congressional district needs to combat drug addiction.
Trump recently referred to Baltimore, which is part of Cummings’ district, as a crime and rat “infested mess” on Twitter.
Cummings addressed Trump’s criticism during a luncheon at the National Press Club on Wednesday.
“I would encourage our leaders to come together and work hard. You know, when you have people in your district who are drug addicted, it’s tough and I would ask people, since you all are here, I want you to look at Mulvaney’s former district. Look at the stats on that, just take a look at it, take a look at it and you will see it’s an interesting comparison. It really is,” Cummings said on Wednesday.
“Again, we have to take people to higher ground. One thing I do agree with, with regard to President Trump, he said it’s no time to be politically correct and he’s right. This is no time because we’re trying to save our nation. We need funds with regard to drug addiction. We need funds to build up our communities,” he added.
Cummings offered to meet with Trump in his district and show him around.
“There are thousands of people in Baltimore who are working hard every day. Some of them, they’re not operating on a shoestring because they do not have a string, but they are coaching the basketball team, they are tutoring children after school. They are doing everything in their power to allow our children to reach their destinies,” he said.
“I want to take him to the Fayette Outreach Center, something that I worked on for 20 years, and he will see little children in a very depressed community, sitting there learning code with regard to computers. I want to take him to all of the different things that we need and perhaps he will help us but we need somebody at the top, at the top, making our cities and by the way, rural areas – do not forget them,” he added.
Cummings noted that there are “many” people suffering in rural areas as well.
“Every time statements are made about the city, they forget there are many suffering in Appalachia, which I will be going to Appalachia in a week or so. They have a serious drug problem in West Virginia. Serious. And guess what? I am just as concerned about them as my next-door neighbor,” he said.
Following the luncheon, members of the press tried to ask Cummings follow-up questions but he declined to comment.