pcloudyn.png
Thursday June 4th, 2020 3:36AM

Cummings urges Trump to 'come to Baltimore'

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

BALTIMORE (AP) — Maryland Rep. Elijah Cummings took the high road in inviting President Donald Trump and other Americans to visit Baltimore but declining to respond in kind to the barrage of presidential tweets and comments disparaging him and the majority-black city he has long represented.

"We are a great community," Cummings, the chairman of a powerful House committee investigating the administration, said Saturday in his first public remarks about the controversy as he participated in the opening of a small neighborhood park near his home.

Community leaders and residents gathered to cut the ribbon on a pocket of greenery and flowers, built from what had been a vacant lot often used as a dumping ground for trash.

"Come to Baltimore. Do not just criticize us, but come to Baltimore and I promise you, you will be welcomed," he said.

Cummings said he doesn't have time for those who criticize the city where he grew up but wants to hear from people willing to help make the community better. He noted the outpouring of support he has received, the thousands of emails, and the presence at the event of leaders from the University of Maryland's medical center, foundations and businesses. He wore a hat and polo shirt of Under Armour, the popular apparel maker headquartered in Baltimore.

Asked directly by reporters afterward if there would be a meeting with Trump, the congressman said he'd love to see Trump in the city.

"The president is welcome to our district," he said.

In a weeklong series of attacks, Trump called the Baltimore district a "rat and rodent infested mess" and complained about Cummings, whose district includes key parts of the city.

The president widened his attack on other cities he did not name but complained are run by Democrats. His comments were widely seen as a race-centered attack on big cities with minority populations.

Cummings' comments Saturday came at another pivotal juncture for the administration, as half of House Democrats now say they favor launching an impeachment inquiry against Trump. It's a threshold that pushes renewed focus on the issue, even though House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has declined to move ahead with proceedings unless there is a greater groundswell, including in public opinion.

Cummings, whose Oversight and Reform Committee is one of the six House committees investigating the Trump administration, said Saturday he was not yet ready to support impeachment.

"There may well come a time when impeachment is appropriate," he told reporters. But for now, he said, he agrees with Pelosi's approach and said that his committee would continue its investigations. "I'm trying to be fair to him," he said. "That's why we need to do our research."

Under sunny skies, with a light breeze, the neighborhood situated in a historic part of West Baltimore offered another view of a city that struggled long before Trump's disparaging tweets, a once-gilded American seaport now confronted with other problems.

Leaders from the community spoke of the region's historic segregation in housing and how that legacy impacted neighborhoods.

Cummings recounted the city's famous residents, including the late Thurgood Marshall, a justice of the Supreme Court, and Ta-Nehisi Coates, a noted black scholar who testified recently in Congress on reparations for slavery. The congressman also gave a nod to his own family's history, his parents arriving from a Southern state to build a better life for their children, and his ascent from the community to law school and the halls of Congress for two decades.

To residents, especially young people, he said, "Let no one define you."

Residents said they were heartened by the attention being paid to Baltimore, and they too urged the White House to consider the way the president's comments may land in a community.

Jackie Cornish, a founder of the Druid Heights community development corporation more than 40 years ago, said she hoped Trump and Cummings could put their collective power together and work for the good of the city. While she feels the president has "disrespected our congressman as well as disrespected our city," she also said: "We still respect our president. As long as he's president, we're trying to lift him up."

Amos Gaskins, who lives across the street from the park and stepped out to greet Cummings, said the congressman has been through a lot and added, "He's doing a great job, a beautiful job."

"We're not what you call a dirty city and a dirty people," Gaskins said. "Donald Trump shouldn't have said that. That's uncalled for."

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News
© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Saban denies offering ex-Ohio State assistant Zach Smith job
Alabama coach Nick Saban says he never offered ex-Ohio State assistant Zach Smith a job
2:17PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Phillies sue to block Phanatic from becoming 'free agent'
Philadelphia Phillies sue New York company that created Phanatic mascot to prevent green fuzzy fan favorite from becoming free agent
2:02PM ( 33 minutes ago )
Water in Hawaii volcano could trigger explosive eruptions
A small pond of water has been discovered inside the summit crater of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano for the first time in recorded history, possibly signaling a shift to a more explosive phase of future eruptions
1:54PM ( 41 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
US exempts aviation, space exports from new Russia sanctions
The Trump administration is exempting aviation safety and space exploration technology from new sanctions it has levied against Russia in connection with the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter
1:31PM ( 1 hour ago )
Democratic White House hopefuls target labor at Nevada forum
Democratic presidential contenders were pressed on their plans to reform health care and fight for workers' rights at a forum held by the nation's largest public employees union
1:31PM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Interview: Jesse Jackson slams 'dangerous' Trump rhetoric
The Rev. Jesse Jackson has condemned recent outbursts by President Donald Trump against lawmakers of color as "dangerous, divisive and diversionary" and says he believes they fuel white nationalist extremism
11:48AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
The Latest: Trump's intelligence director pick withdraws
President Donald Trump's pick for national intelligence director, Texas Rep. John Ratcliffe, has withdrawn from consideration
11:27PM ( 15 hours ago )
Puerto Rico governor resigns as promised; successor sworn in
Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló has resigned as promised, clearing the way for veteran politician Pedro Pierluisi to be sworn in as his replacement
10:25PM ( 16 hours ago )
The Latest: PRico Senate leader lambastes departing governor
The president of Puerto Rico's Senate has criticized departing Gov. Ricardo Rosselló for naming former congressional representative Pedro Pierluisi as the next governor and seems to be hinting that he will fight the succession plan
7:35PM ( 19 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Saban denies offering ex-Ohio State assistant Zach Smith job
Alabama coach Nick Saban says he never offered ex-Ohio State assistant Zach Smith a job
2:17PM ( 19 minutes ago )
Phillies sue to block Phanatic from becoming 'free agent'
Philadelphia Phillies sue New York company that created Phanatic mascot to prevent green fuzzy fan favorite from becoming free agent
2:02PM ( 34 minutes ago )
Water in Hawaii volcano could trigger explosive eruptions
A small pond of water has been discovered inside the summit crater of Hawaii's Kilauea volcano for the first time in recorded history, possibly signaling a shift to a more explosive phase of future eruptions
1:54PM ( 42 minutes ago )
Kevin Spacey reads poem about dejected boxer at Rome museum
Actor Kevin Spacey has read a poem about a worn-out and lonely boxer during an appearance at a Rome museum weeks after a criminal sexual misconduct case against him collapsed
1:52PM ( 44 minutes ago )
Gruden doubts Redskins will trade holdout Trent Williams
Gruden doubts Redskins will trade Trent Williams; holdout tackle being fined $40,000 a day
1:42PM ( 54 minutes ago )