MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell took President Donald Trump’s remarks out of context Friday — while complaining that Trump’s team had taken Joe Biden’s remarks out of context.
Mitchell referenced the former vice president’s slip of the tongue Thursday — “Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids” — as he spoke about education opportunities to an audience that was primarily Asian and Hispanic.
She complained that a tweet from the Trump campaign’s Rapid Response Director Andrew Clark left out the context of Biden’s comment. (RELATED: Biden Buckles, Flips On Hyde Amendment Under Pressure From Democrats)
Joe Biden slip-up in Iowa tonight.
“Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids.”
Yikes…have fun mitigating that one. pic.twitter.com/m2VxZbnFHF
— Andrew Clark (@AndrewHClark) August 9, 2019
And while Clark’s caption may not have included Biden’s immediate reaction — a pause and then an attempt to clarify — the video included in his tweet did.
And the other thing we should do is we should challenge these students. We should challenge students in these schools, have advanced placement programs in these schools. We have this notion that somehow if you’re poor, you cannot do it. Poor kids are just as bright and just as talented as white kids. Wealthy kids, white kids, Asian kids.
But while Mitchell was complaining about Clark and others omitting the context, she defended Biden’s attacks that took Trump’s words out of context. “It comes after this confrontation between Biden and a reporter from conservative outlet Breitbart — Biden fighting back after the reporter claimed, incorrectly, Biden had misquoted the president after Charlottesville,” she said.
The Breitbart reporter in the video clip Mitchell shared confronted Biden, claiming that President Trump had very clearly condemned white supremacy, while Biden argued, as he has since he first announced his run for president, “Let’s get this straight. He said, ‘there are very fine people in both groups,’ they’re chanting anti-semitic slogans, carrying flags.”
But a look at the president’s full remarks following the unrest in Charlottesville, showed that the reporter was right, that Biden had taken Trump’s words out of context and that Mitchell had doubled down, accepting Biden’s misquote as the whole story.
As the Daily Caller reported at Biden’s campaign launch:
What Biden omitted was the full context of Trump’s remarks. RealClearPolitics noted what the president actually said during the press conference at Trump Tower:
“Excuse me, they didn’t put themselves down as neo-Nazis, and you had some very bad people in that group. But you also had people that were very fine people on both sides. You had people in that group – excuse me, excuse me, I saw the same pictures you did. You had people in that group that were there to protest the taking down of, to them, a very, very important statue and the renaming of a park from Robert E. Lee to another name.”
The president was fairly clear in noting that the “fine people” he referenced were those who were simply there to protest the removal of a statue and the renaming of a park. Even so, he offered more clarity later in the press conference, saying, “I’m not talking about the neo-Nazis and white nationalists because they should be condemned totally.”