AZ Lawmaker defends Trump: 'we know there are places in this world that are s***holes'

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Re. Jay Lawrence. 15 Jan. 2018 (Source: 3TV/CBS 5 News) Re. Jay Lawrence. 15 Jan. 2018 (Source: 3TV/CBS 5 News)
Former African American outreach dir. for Bernie Sanders, Marcus Ferrell. 15 Jan. 2018 (Source: 3TV/CBS 5 News) Former African American outreach dir. for Bernie Sanders, Marcus Ferrell. 15 Jan. 2018 (Source: 3TV/CBS 5 News)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

State lawmaker Jay Lawrence is doubling down on his defense of President Donald Trump who reportedly referred to African nations as, "s***hole countries." 

"We know there are people in this world living in huts, drinking from streams also used for defecation, we know there are places in this world that are s***holes," Lawrence said Monday during a phone interview. 

Last week, the president reportedly made the offensive comments during an immigration meeting in which Trump also suggested the U.S. accept more immigrants from predominately white countries like Norway. 

Initially, the White House did not deny using the word "s***hole." Later, the president said he used tough language in the meeting, but not that specific phrase. 

[RELATED: Trump defends self after comments, says: 'I am not a racist']

[RELATED: Lawmakers bemoan backlash over Trump's comments amid bipartisan push for DACA deal]

Following those initial reports, Lawrence, a Republican from Scottsdale, took to Facebook to defend the president's comments. 

"Trump's reference to certain places in the world are accurate," Lawrence said in one post on Friday. 

In another, he said, "You Trump haters will say anything to deride a great president." 

"When it comes down to dealing with issues of race race, color, creed, country, this president has consistently shown that he wants to operate from a place of hate and it's ironic that someone is defending this guy on a day with so much love and so much inclusiveness is happening around the nation, said Marcus Ferrell, the former African American Outreach director for the Bernie Sanders 2016 presidential campaign. 

Ferrell, who is now running for a seat in the Arizona Legislature, made his comments at a rally in Phoenix celebrating the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday. 

If anything, Lawrence has shown he is not shy about jumping into racially charged issues. 

Last week, he used a mandatory sexual harassment training session at the state capitol to rail against pro football players kneeling during the national anthem. 

The players are protesting the shooting of unarmed black men by police officers. 

Lawrence said the protest was offensive. 

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Dennis WlechVeteran political reporter Dennis Welch is a well-respected political expert in Arizona.

Dennis Welch
Political Editor

Before making the move to television, Welch wrote and edited for the Arizona Guardian, a highly influential online news site dedicated to Arizona politics and government where he served as owner and editor. During his Guardian days, Welch was a frequent guest on “Politics Unplugged” and has been a regular fixture on the state political landscape since 2005 appearing on numerous radio and television talk shows. “I am thrilled to start working with such a talented and dedicated staff of journalists,” said Welch. “This is a great opportunity to broaden the reach of my political coverage and tell stories that affect Arizona voters and their families.” With more than 13 years of experience under his belt, Welch’s arrival only strengthens 3TV’s commitment to providing first-rate political and government coverage across all platforms. When not covering politics, Welch is an avid runner and fronts a punk rock band that plays frequently throughout the Southwest and California. Welch is a well-respected political expert in Arizona and his addition means 3TV will provide a stronger, more robust political presence in Arizona. He joins 3TV from the Arizona Guardian, a highly influential online news site dedicated to Arizona politics and government where he served as owner and editor. During his Guardian days, Welch was a frequent guest on “Politics Unplugged” and has been a regular fixture on the state political landscape since 2005 appearing on numerous radio and television talk shows. “I am thrilled to start working with such a talented and dedicated staff of journalists,” said Welch. “This is a great opportunity to broaden the reach of my political coverage and tell stories that affect Arizona voters and their families.” With more than 13 years of experience under his belt, Welch’s arrival only strengthens 3TV’s commitment to providing first-rate political and government coverage across all platforms. When not covering politics, Welch is an avid runner and fronts a punk rock band that plays frequently throughout the Southwest and California.

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