House Speaker Ryan to the president's alleged comments on Friday, saying, "The first thing that came to my mind was very unfortunate, unhelpful, but you know what I thought of right away?"
"My family like a whole lot of people came from Ireland on what they called coffin ships and came here and worked the railroads". Ryan portrayed a "beautiful story of America" in his family's journey, and he suggested Americans should celebrate the diversity that came with immigration.
Friday morning, President Trump tweeted that he never said anything derogatory about Haitians other than Haiti is a poor and troubled nation.
Ryan is the only GOP leader to criticize Trump's remarks.
Bipartisan immigration talks stalled on Thursday after Trump threw "gasoline to the fire", in the words of Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.), by dismissing immigrants from "shithole countries". "What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made - a big setback for DACA!" I have a wonderful relationship with Haitians.More news: Trump Expands Offshore Drilling in "Assault" on Biodiversity and Coastal & Indigenous Communities
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Ryan added, "Ultimately, I think we should go to a merit-based immigration system".
Almost 800,000 people who came to the United States illegally as children were protected under the Obama administration, but Trump will scrap the so-called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program on March 5 unless Congress legislates a fix.
Ryan - who has long advocated for major changes to Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security - said they are going to need to work across the aisle on any significant changes to the programs as Republicans don't have a supermajority in Senate.
The moderator of the Wisconsin event asked Speaker Ryan, "Will [DACA] get attached to the spending bill?" As a result, Ryan said he doubts there will be a government shutdown. "That's because that's just not good government".