Former Trump advisor and current CNN political commentator Steve Cortes criticized Don Lemon for what he said about Kanye West after the rapper’s meeting with President Trump during Lemon’s show Thursday night.
Charles Blow, a political commentator, was also on the show for this segment.
“You know, Don, you said this meeting was embarrassing,” Cortes started. “I think quite frankly what’s embarrassing is the condescension you’ve shown to Kanye West — someone who I think is a brave and independent thinker, a creative genius.”
Cortes then brought up Tara Setmayer’s comments on Lemon’s show from Tuesday when she called West “the token negro of the Trump administration.”
“And for you and a lot of guests to dismiss him as a ‘token negro’ and to question his mental stability when you’re not doctors, when you haven’t examined him, I think is really unfortunate,” he added. “And it’s an example, unfortunately, that is all too common on the Left … When a minority doesn’t toe the party line, they are vilified and dismissed.”
Lemon pushed back, pointing out that Setmayer is a conservative. Cortes responded:
Now, to [Charles Blow’s] point about does this president care about minorities, let me tell you my personal experience with him in that very same Oval Office without cameras present. All he wanted to know about from me: ‘What can I do for the Hispanic community? What can we do for growth in your community?’ I said, ‘Well, one thing you can do right now — let’s send a tweet and talk about more long-term things we can do about the community.’ So he absolutely cares, whether the camera is on or off. But Kanye West is a person who speaks from the heart. You call it a rant. … It’s not a rant to me.
Lemon then said, “I just don’t have the energy tonight, because there’s so much in there to come on.”
“You remember when Barack Obama was quoting Jay-Z, and Michelle Obama said if she wanted to be like somebody, she wanted to be like Beyonce? They search through every lyric they had and tried to tell us how these were not geniuses, these were not honorable people, these were horrible people,” Blow added.
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