GOP Lawmaker Slams Haiti: ‘Sheet Metal And Garbage’ Everywhere You Look

Ed Mazza

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) slammed Haiti on Tuesday, saying the country is covered with garbage and that conditions there are “disgusting.”

Gaetz was defending President Donald Trump, who last week reportedly dismissed Haiti and African nations as “shithole” countries while meeting with lawmakers to discuss immigration.

Trump has denied the comments.

“I would not pick those terms, but I would say that the conditions in Haiti are deplorable, they are disgusting,” Gaetz told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes. “I mean, everywhere you look in Haiti, it’s sheet metal and garbage when I was there.”

Earlier in the conversation, Hayes tried to engage Gaetz by asking how he’d feel if someone used Trump’s reported language to describe Florida.

“If I called ― and you’ll forgive me for using the language of the president ― but if I called Okaloosa County a shithole, you’d understandably be upset with that, right?” Hayes asked.

Gaetz, whose district includes much of Okaloosa County, replied:

“Yes; I could also prove you wrong, because I could bring you to Okaloosa County and show you that it’s the home of the most beautiful beaches in America. I don’t know that in Haiti they can make the same claim.”

Trump’s comment set off protests by the Haitian-American community, including a demonstration outside Mar-a-Lago in Florida on Monday.

“I don’t want my kids to grow up thinking their parents are from a shithole country,” protester James Leger said, according to NBC Miami. “We’re asking you to apologize to the Haitians.”

Another protester wanted to remind Trump that Haitian immigrants contribute to America.

The president does not understand us,” Jean Bruny, a Haitian pastor in West Palm Beach, told the Palm Beach Post on Monday. “We are not coming here to do any bad thing, we are coming here for a better life and to help our family in Haiti. We pay taxes, we buy houses, we contribute to the United States.”

Watch the full conversation above.

Also on HuffPost

Ashton Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher spoke out onstage as host of the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Jan. 29, 2017. His remarks came just two days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order barring citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States for three months.<br /><br />"Everyone in airports that belong in my America! You are part of the fabric of who we are, and we we love you and we welcome you."
Ashton Kutcher spoke out onstage as host of the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Jan. 29, 2017. His remarks came just two days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order barring citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States for three months.

"Everyone in airports that belong in my America! You are part of the fabric of who we are, and we we love you and we welcome you."

Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Julia Louis-Dreyfus during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards spoke out about how she was "horrified" by the immigrant ban, being the child of an immigrant herself.<br /><br />"I am American patriot. I love this country and because I love this country, I am horrified by its blemishes. And this immigrant ban is a blemish and it is un-American."
Julia Louis-Dreyfus during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards spoke out about how she was "horrified" by the immigrant ban, being the child of an immigrant herself.

"I am American patriot. I love this country and because I love this country, I am horrified by its blemishes. And this immigrant ban is a blemish and it is un-American."

Alyssa Milano

Alyssa Milano took to Twitter to support her friends. <br /><br />"My best friend Alaa Mohammad Khaled is Muslim His parents were Palestinian refugees His brother is DJ Khaled RefugeesWelcome"
Alyssa Milano took to Twitter to support her friends.

"My best friend Alaa Mohammad Khaled is Muslim His parents were Palestinian refugees His brother is DJ Khaled RefugeesWelcome"

Taylor Schilling

Taylor Schilling with the cast of "Orange is the New Black" during the 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"We stand up here representing a diverse group of people, representing generations of families who have sought a better life here, We know that it's going to be up to us and all of you to keep telling stories. What united us is stronger than the forces that seek to divide us."
Taylor Schilling with the cast of "Orange is the New Black" during the 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"We stand up here representing a diverse group of people, representing generations of families who have sought a better life here, We know that it's going to be up to us and all of you to keep telling stories. What united us is stronger than the forces that seek to divide us."

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington wears a safety pin during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"I’ll be wearing one of these tonight. On my arm. To show solidarity. We will not stop fighting for our safety & the safety of our fellow citizens and human beings. Actors are activists, no matter what, because we embody the worth and humanity of all people."
Kerry Washington wears a safety pin during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"I’ll be wearing one of these tonight. On my arm. To show solidarity. We will not stop fighting for our safety & the safety of our fellow citizens and human beings. Actors are activists, no matter what, because we embody the worth and humanity of all people."

George Takei

George Takei posted on Twitter, sharing an article that made people think about the immigration ban. He wrote, "I hope we're all paying attention." 
George Takei posted on Twitter, sharing an article that made people think about the immigration ban. He wrote, "I hope we're all paying attention." 

Dev Patel

Dev Patel stopped on the red carpet to speak out during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"I've just flown in from India and to fly into what was a nightmare, to realize that this is actually happening right now in the world, in a country where I live, it's heartbreaking. The first thought that came in my head was just thousands of children and mothers and young fathers that have turned up to these shores with hope, and they're being swatted away. It's just so divisive and negative and wrong. It's scary, it's really scary."
Dev Patel stopped on the red carpet to speak out during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"I've just flown in from India and to fly into what was a nightmare, to realize that this is actually happening right now in the world, in a country where I live, it's heartbreaking. The first thought that came in my head was just thousands of children and mothers and young fathers that have turned up to these shores with hope, and they're being swatted away. It's just so divisive and negative and wrong. It's scary, it's really scary."

Seth Rogen

Seth Rogen took to Twitter sharing where a protest was being held. 
Seth Rogen took to Twitter sharing where a protest was being held. 

Sophia Bush

Sophia Bush took to Twitter in support of human rights. <br /><br />She later tweeted, “Bravo to the courts. At least some folks in charge adhere to the Constitution. #NoHate #NoFear #RefugeesAreWelcomeHere.”
Sophia Bush took to Twitter in support of human rights. 

She later tweeted, “Bravo to the courts. At least some folks in charge adhere to the Constitution. #NoHate #NoFear #RefugeesAreWelcomeHere.”

Sarah Paulson

Sarah Paulson addressed the ban during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />“I would like to make plea for everyone, if they can, any money they have to spare please donate to the ACLU to protect the rights and liberties of people across this country.”
Sarah Paulson addressed the ban during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

“I would like to make plea for everyone, if they can, any money they have to spare please donate to the ACLU to protect the rights and liberties of people across this country.”

David Harbour

David Harbour addresses the ban while accepting an award for "Stranger Things" during the SAG Awards.<br /><br />"Now, as we act in the continuing narrative of 'Stranger Things,' we 1983 Midwesterners will repel bullies, we will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no home. We will get past the lies, we will hunt monsters. And when we are at a loss amidst the hypocrisy and the casual violence of certain individuals and institutions. We will, as per Chief Jim Hopper, punch some people in the face when they seek to destroy the weak, the disenfranchised and the marginalized!"
David Harbour addresses the ban while accepting an award for "Stranger Things" during the SAG Awards.

"Now, as we act in the continuing narrative of 'Stranger Things,' we 1983 Midwesterners will repel bullies, we will shelter freaks and outcasts, those who have no home. We will get past the lies, we will hunt monsters. And when we are at a loss amidst the hypocrisy and the casual violence of certain individuals and institutions. We will, as per Chief Jim Hopper, punch some people in the face when they seek to destroy the weak, the disenfranchised and the marginalized!"

Mark Ruffalo

Mark Ruffalo shared on social media what he really thought about the immigration ban. 
Mark Ruffalo shared on social media what he really thought about the immigration ban. 

Mahershala Ali

Mahershala Ali during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.<br /><br />"When we get caught up in the minutiae and the details that make us all different, I think there's two ways of seeing that. There's the opportunity to see the texture of that person, the characteristics that make them unique, and then there's an opportunity to go to war about it and say that this person is different from me, I don't like you, let's battle."
Mahershala Ali during the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

"When we get caught up in the minutiae and the details that make us all different, I think there's two ways of seeing that. There's the opportunity to see the texture of that person, the characteristics that make them unique, and then there's an opportunity to go to war about it and say that this person is different from me, I don't like you, let's battle."

Miley Cyrus

Miley Cyrus shared a multicolored image about standing alongside immigrants in the United States.
Miley Cyrus shared a multicolored image about standing alongside immigrants in the United States.

Michael Moore

Michael Moore took to Twitter in outrage.<br /><br />"To our Muslim neighbors in the world: I & tens of millions of others are so very sorry. The majority of Americans did not vote 4 this man."
Michael Moore took to Twitter in outrage.

"To our Muslim neighbors in the world: I & tens of millions of others are so very sorry. The majority of Americans did not vote 4 this man."

Emma Stone

Emma Stone also addressed the ban during the SAG Awards.<br /><br />“We have to speak up. Staying silent only helps the oppressor, not the victim. Right now I hope that people seeing things that are being done that are unconstitutional and inhumane would say something."
Emma Stone also addressed the ban during the SAG Awards.

“We have to speak up. Staying silent only helps the oppressor, not the victim. Right now I hope that people seeing things that are being done that are unconstitutional and inhumane would say something."

Lily Allen

Singer Lily Allen took to social media to express her opinion about the immigration ban, calling it "a heinous act."
Singer Lily Allen took to social media to express her opinion about the immigration ban, calling it "a heinous act."

Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne

Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne brought a sign to the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.
Simon Helberg and Jocelyn Towne brought a sign to the 23rd annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.

Mira Sorvino

In February 2017, an appeals court decided against Donald Trump's proposed travel ban.<br /><br />Actress Mira Sorvino tweeted after court ruling, saying, “Thank God!!And TY to all the judges, and lawyers and citizens who protested! This is our America! #nomuslimban #lovenothatemakesamericagreat.”
In February 2017, an appeals court decided against Donald Trump's proposed travel ban.

Actress Mira Sorvino tweeted after court ruling, saying, “Thank God!!And TY to all the judges, and lawyers and citizens who protested! This is our America! #nomuslimban #lovenothatemakesamericagreat.”

Albert Brooks

After the appeals court ruling, Albert Brooks tweeted: “Looks like the appeals court is not getting that Ivanka Trump gift basket.”
After the appeals court ruling, Albert Brooks tweeted: “Looks like the appeals court is not getting that Ivanka Trump gift basket.”

Denzel Washington

Denzel Washington is seen backstage at the SAG Awards.<br /><br />“I think we as Americans better learn to unite, We need to put our elected officials’ feet to the fire and demand that they work together or they won’t get back into office."
Denzel Washington is seen backstage at the SAG Awards.

“I think we as Americans better learn to unite, We need to put our elected officials’ feet to the fire and demand that they work together or they won’t get back into office."

Rob Reiner

Rob Reiner took to Twitter after the Immigration Ban became public. 
Rob Reiner took to Twitter after the Immigration Ban became public. 

Kumail Nanjiani

"Silicon Valley's" Kumail Nanjiani tweeted: "As someone who was born in Pakistan I can tell you coming into America is VERY difficult. A #Muslimban accomplishes nothing but hate."
"Silicon Valley's" Kumail Nanjiani tweeted: "As someone who was born in Pakistan I can tell you coming into America is VERY difficult. A #Muslimban accomplishes nothing but hate."

Emmy Rossum

Emmy Rossum shared on Twitter, "Refugees are FLEEING TERROR. They are not terrorists. #muslimban."
Emmy Rossum shared on Twitter, "Refugees are FLEEING TERROR. They are not terrorists. #muslimban."

Love HuffPost? Become a founding member of HuffPost Plus today.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost.