A Sunday morning CNN panel got heated when one guest tied Democratic Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s blackface debacle to his earlier comments on late-term abortion.
“State of the Union” host Jake Tapper began the segment by asking Scott Jennings, who served as special assistant to former President George W. Bush, whether Republicans ought to “sit this one out” with regard to allegations of racism.
“Steve King is still in the House of Representatives. You have a president who referred to African nations as s-h-i-t-hole countries,” he added.
Jennings responded by referring to an earlier comment from CNN’s Bakari Sellers, in which the latter claimed that Northam’s alleged appearance in blackface spoke to his unwillingness to recognize the human dignity of African Americans.
But I want to touch on a comment you made in the phrase human dignity because this is the second moment where Ralph Northam this week failed to respect human dignity. The first moment, of course, was when he made his ghoulish, horrific statements about abortion. This was his second PR debacle this week.
Previous to this blackface-KKK robe-moonwalking press conference he was on a radio show. He’s a pediatrician talking about — talking about aborting children at the moment of birth and then even after they had been delivered. I agree with you, Bakari. Human dignity matters and we ought to respect every human life of every race, especially these poor babies who are laying in delivery rooms when you have governors of states that think we should have a discussion about murdering them after they were born?
“OK, stop, stop stop!” Democratic commentator Karen Finney interrupted Jennings. “That’s a lie. What you’re saying is a ghoulish lie. I am on the board of NARAL Pro-Choice America. That is a lie that the right-wing has perpetuated … I heard what he said. I don’t agree with what he said and the way he said it. But what we’re talking about is making sure that, in those instances, it is a woman and a doctor — not anyone at this table or anyone in Congress — making the decision.”
Finney quickly spun the conversation back to “racism in America” without ever pointing out what exactly Jennings had said that was not true.
Northam had commented earlier in the week about a bill in the Virginia legislature that would effectively allow abortion through all nine months of pregnancy. (RELATED: Judge Nap: Northam Is ‘Unfit To Serve’ As Governor Over Late-Term Abortion Comments)
“So in this particular example if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen, the infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother,” he said.