The secretary of the Homeland Security Department testified under oath Tuesday that she “did not hear” President Donald Trump use a certain vulgarity to describe African countries. But she says she doesn’t “dispute the president was using tough language.”
Trump has been accused of using the word “shithole” to describe African countries during an Oval Office meeting Thursday with a bipartisan group of six senators.
Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, testifying before the Senate Judiciary Committee, was asked by Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., specifically if she heard the vulgarity used or a “substantially similar word” to describe certain countries.
Nielsen said the conversation was impassioned and the president was using tough language. She added that “others in the room were also using tough language.”
Nielsen acknowledged the president might have used the s-word.
“Anything is possible. Yes, mam,” Nielsen said in response to a question from Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., about whether Trump might have used the slur without Nielsen hearing it.