The Latest: Trump defends immigration stance in tweet

FILE - In this Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 file photo, US President Donald Trump speaks during a joint news conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna

FILE - In this Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018 file photo, US President Donald Trump speaks during a joint news conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna

FILE- In this Jan. 9, 2018, file photo, President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with lawmakers on immigration policy in the Cabinet Room of th

FILE- In this Jan. 9, 2018, file photo, President Donald Trump listens during a meeting with lawmakers on immigration policy in the Cabinet Room of th

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., left, walks with Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., the minority whip, as lawmakers continue negotiating on a dea

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., left, walks with Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., the minority whip, as lawmakers continue negotiating on a dea

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders concludes her daily press briefing in the Brady press briefing room at the White House, in Washingt

White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders concludes her daily press briefing in the Brady press briefing room at the White House, in Washingt

In this Jan. 9, 2017, photo, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., left, and Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md. listen as President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with

In this Jan. 9, 2017, photo, Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., left, and Rep. Steny Hoyer, D-Md. listen as President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with

Hispanic Caucus Chair Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., joined at right by House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md., gives her support to "dreamers,"

Hispanic Caucus Chair Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., joined at right by House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, D-Md., gives her support to "dreamers,"

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., left, listens as House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., left, listens as House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelois of Calif., gestures as she speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, on Capitol Hill in Washington.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelois of Calif., gestures as she speaks during a news conference, Thursday, Jan. 11, 2018, on Capitol Hill in Washington.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on President Trump and immigration (all times local):

7 a.m.

President Donald Trump says a bipartisan immigration proposal is "a big step backwards." He tweets that it would force the U.S. "to take large numbers of people from high crime countries which are doing badly."

Trump seems to be defending himself against the furor over his vulgar words to describe African countries. Trump questioned at a White House meeting Thursday why the U.S. would accept more immigrants from Haiti and Africa than from places like Norway.

Trump says the "so-called bipartisan" deal "was a big step backwards" because it doesn't fund a wall along the Mexican border.

He adds: "I want a merit based system of immigration and people who will help take our country to the next level. I want safety and security for our people. I want to stop the massive inflow of drugs."

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2 a.m.

President Donald Trump's dismissal of Haiti and certain African countries with a vulgar expression has created a furor.

Trump made the remark Thursday during a White House meeting after senators discussed revamping immigration rules. That's according to three people who were briefed on the conversation but weren't authorized to describe it publicly.

Trump questioned why the U.S. would accept more immigrants from Haiti and "shithole countries" in Africa rather than places like Norway, as he rejected a bipartisan immigration deal.

Trump's contemptuous description of an entire continent startled lawmakers in the meeting and immediately revived charges of racism. The White House did not deny his remark but issued a statement saying Trump supports immigration policies that welcome "those who can contribute to our society."