Vice President Mike Pence says he “knows the president’s heart” after President Trump was accused of being racist for referring to Haiti, El Salvador, and African nations as “shithole countries.”

In an interview with the Associated Press on Monday, Pence said Trump is focused on implementing a merit-based immigration system that will “contribute to a growing American economy and thriving communities.”

He added that Trump’s immigration policy does not consider immigrants’ “race or creed.”

Trump has denied referring to the other nations as “shithole countries” during a meeting with lawmakers about immigration reform. Trump has acknowledged using “tough” language during the conversation.