Trump plans visit to city he called rodent infested
Baltimore – Months after President Donald Trump derided the congressional district that includes Baltimore as a “disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess,” groups appalled by his attacks plan to protest his expected appearance Thursday before Congressional Republicans on an annual retreat on the city’s waterfront.
Trump’s visit will be limited to a speech to the Republicans at the hotel hosting the event. He is not scheduled to tour any neighborhoods.
“I think it’s engendered a lot of anger from the people in the city,” protest organizer Sharon Black said about the president’s attacks on the majority African American congressional district.
Black, with the group Peoples Power Assembly, said organizers expect hundreds of protesters to gather about two blocks from the hotel. Other rallies are planned for Friday and Saturday.
Trump’s barrage of tweets began in late July against Maryland’s 7th Congressional District. They included calling its representative, Democrat Elijah Cummings, “racist” and a “brutal bully.” He charged that Cummings’ district is “considered the worst run and most dangerous anywhere in the United States.”
Cummings has represented Maryland in Congress for decades and currently chairs the House Oversight and Reform Committee, which is investigating the Trump administration. His district includes neighborhoods that have struggled with poverty and crime, but also has more affluent areas and landmarks such as Johns Hopkins University and its hospital and the Social Security Administration.
His office did not respond for comment on the upcoming trip.
Baltimore Mayor Bernard “Jack” Young said that if Trump travels beyond the city’s Inner Harbor, he will notice “that every neighborhood is not crime-ridden and dirty.” Meanwhile, City Council president Brandon Scott said he hopes the visit will allow Trump to see some of the infrastructure challenges that the city faces.
“We know he’s been touting bringing infrastructure to Americans who live across the country but has failed to deliver, and those jobs that could be created through that would change the very neighborhoods that he was disparaging,” Scott said.