New Hampshire Democrats reacted angrily Thursday to President Donald Trump’s description of their state as a "drug-infested den" in a leaked transcript of a phone call earlier this year with Mexico’s president.
"Up in New Hampshire — I won New Hampshire because New Hampshire is a drug-infested den," Trump told Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto over the phone in January, according to the transcript of the call obtained by The Washington Post and published Thursday.
Trump campaigned on promising to fix the opioid addiction crisis that has hit states like New Hampshire particularly hard. He won the state in the Republican primaries but lost it to Democrat Hillary Clinton in the November election.
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), who has introduced legislation such as Carl’s Law to combat addiction to prescription painkillers and heroin, demanded an apology from the president on Twitter.
".@RealDonaldTrump owes NH an apology & then should follow through on his promise to Granite Staters to help end this crisis," Shaheen said. "It’s absolutely unacceptable for the President to be talking about NH in this way — a gross misrepresentation of NH & the epidemic."
The state’s Democratic Party Twitter account tweeted a photo of a pristine winter coast landscape, asking if that looked like a "drug infested den," and it called on state Republican leaders to reply to Trump.
The New Hampshire Republican Party didn’t defend the president’s description outright, but it replied on Twitter that the party has been working to combat the drug crisis.
"Are @NHDems denying NH is in the middle of an opioid epidemic?" the tweet read. "NH Republicans have been working everyday to fight the crisis."
Amid the bickering, Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) called for bipartisanship in light of the comments.
"Instead of insulting people in the throes of addiction, @POTUS needs to work across party lines to actually stem the tide of this crisis," Hassan said on Twitter.