The House of Representatives has voted to officially condemn Donald Trump's tweets telling four Congresswomen to “go back” to their home countries.
Democrats passed a resolution through the chamber over strong Republican opposition, by 240-187 votes. Four Republicans voted to condemn the president’s tweets.
Mr Trump denied he is a racist amid the widespread outrage sparked by the series of tweets, in which he told four US congresswomen to "go back" to the "broken and crime infested places from which they came".
The measure passed in the House last night carries no legal repercussions for the president.
Republicans formally objected after Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California said during a floor speech that the president's tweets were "racist".
Led by Representative Doug Collins of Georgia, Republicans moved to have her words stricken from the record, a rare procedural rebuke. House Democrat Steny Hoyer said Ms Pelosi had indeed violated a House rule against characterising an action as racist.
Responding to the result, Mr Trump tweeted: “So great to see how unified the Republican Party was on today’s vote concerning statements I made about four Democrat Congresswomen.
“If you really want to see statements, look at the horrible things they said about our Country, Israel, and much more. They are now the top, most visible members of the House Democrats, who are now wedded to this bitterness and hate. The Republican vote was 187-4. Wow!
“Also, this was the first time since 1984 that the Speaker of the House was ruled Out of Order and broke the Rules of the House. Quite a day!”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Mr Trump was not racist, but called on leaders "from the president to the speaker to the freshman members of the House" to attack ideas, not the people who espouse them.
"There's been a consensus that political rhetoric has gotten way, way heated across the political spectrum," said the Republican leader from Kentucky, breaking his own two days of silence on Mr Trump's attacks.
....visible members of the House Democrats, who are now wedded to this bitterness and hate. The Republican vote was 187-4. Wow! Also, this was the first time since 1984 that the Speaker of the House was ruled Out of Order and broke the Rules of the House. Quite a day!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump)July 17, 2019
Hours earlier, the president tweeted, "Those Tweets were NOT Racist. I don't have a Racist bone in my body!" He wrote that House Republicans should "not show 'weakness"' by agreeing to a resolution he called"a Democrat con game."
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, one of Mr Trump's four targets, returned his fire. "You're right, Mr President - you don't have a racist bone in your body. You have a racist mind in your head and a racist heart in your chest," she tweeted.
The four-page Democratic resolution said the House "strongly condemns President Donald Trump's racist comments that have legitimised and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of colour".
It said Mr Trump's slights "do not belong in congress or in the United States of America".
In his initial remarks, Mr Trump did not mention the four congresswomen by name but the comments are widely accepted to be directed at Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts and Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.