"Come to Baltimore," Rep. Elijah Cummings urged President Trump—and everyone else—in a speech Saturday. "Do not just criticize us, but come to Baltimore and I promise you, you will be welcomed." Cummings issued the invitation at a ceremony opening a new park in the city, near his home, the AP reports. Trump had ripped Baltimore last week, as well as Cummings, saying its people are "living in hell." In his first public comments about Trump's statements, Cummings, a Democrat, said he's not interested in criticism of the city, but he wants to hear from people trying to improve it. In the new park, flowers and greenery replace the trash that had been dumped in the vacant lot. Cummings said his focus is on young people. "I don’t know what I would have done if I’d had people in high places when I was a little boy telling me what I couldn’t do," he said, per the Washington Post. "Instead, I had people telling me what I could do."
Although Cummings didn't answer Trump immediately, Baltimore's newspaper sprang into action after the criticism, CNN's Brian Stelter writes. In addition to its well-publicized "rat" headline, the Sun generated scores of news articles, news stories, columns, cartoons, and fact-checks of Trump's claims. Trump had said Baltimore had "stolen" billions of dollars in federal funding, for instance, but an article noted that the city government doesn't even receive any such amount. One Sun reporter conceded that Baltimore does have problems. "But the difference between what Trump is saying as opposed to other politicians who make similar observations is whether they actually try to help the city," Luke Broadwater told Stelter. "People feel like Trump is just mocking them." (Read more Baltimore stories.)