“What’s Your Ethnicity?” Kellyanne Conway Defends Trump With Shocking Question to Reporter

“My ancestors are from Ireland and Italy,” she added in the stunning exchange.

Oliver Contreras/AP

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More than two days after President Donald Trump published a thread of incendiary and racist tweets telling four Democratic congresswomen of color to “go back” to the “crime-infested” “countries” “from which they came,” the president has repeatedly declined to specify exactly which countries he was suggesting the freshmen Democrats return to.

The target of his tweets—Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, and Ilhan Omar—are all American citizens. Only Omar was born outside of the country.

But on Tuesday, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway appeared to inadvertently answer the very question Trump has deliberately avoided.

“If the president was not telling these four congresswomen to return to their supposed countries of origin, to which countries was he referring?” reporter Andrew Feinberg of Beltway Breakfast asked during a gaggle.

“What your ethnicity?” Conway asked.

The moment clearly shocked Feinberg. “Uh, why is that relevant?” he asked in return.

“Because I’m asking you a question,” Conway shot back. “My ancestors are from Ireland and Italy.”

By highlighting her own ancestors’ purported countries of origin, Conway appeared to confirm Trump’s intentions. She continued by issuing a full-throated defense of Trump and his racist tweets and demands that the four congresswomen, who have all been sharply critical of his administration, leave the U.S. if they were unhappy.

Conway’s remarks came as her husband, George Conway, a prominent conservative lawyer and vocal Trump critic, published a searing Washington Post op-ed labeling Trump a “racist president.”

As her comments circulated on social media, Conway claimed that her question was not intended to disrespect Feinberg. “Like many, I am proud of my ethnicity,” she tweeted.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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