"Vagina-grabbing president": Political pundit cops it
GOD Bless America.
In a week of bad comparisons in history (Sean Spicer, Hitler, anyone?), a former aid to President Ronald Reagan is copping criticism, described as a "controversy merchant", for comparing US President Donald Trump to civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr.
But it was his television counterpart, the former national press secretary for Bernie Sanders, whose reaction has everyone talking, calling Donald Trump a "vagina-grabbing President".
Jeffrey Lord's comments have so enraged viewers, it has been described as "sickening" as the attacks on the President begin to roll in despite a week of positive reviews by critics for his role in Syria.
CNN political commentator Jeffrey Lord "raised eyebrows" overnight after a discussion on America's complex health care system erupted into the obscene.
Appearing on Alisyn Camerota's New Day program, Lord attempted to compare Mr Trump's efforts to rally support for his controversial health care reform to King's well-documented fight for civil rights justice.
"I want to say something here that I know will probably drive Symone crazy, but think of President Trump as the Martin Luther King of health care," Lord said.
"When I was a kid, President Kennedy did not want to introduce the civil rights bill because he said it wasn't popular, he didn't have the votes for it," he added.
"Dr. King kept putting people in the streets in harm's way to put the pressure on so that the bill would be introduced. That's what finally worked."
But political commentator Symone Sanders was having none of it - with her reaction online being described as "priceless".
"Jeffrey, you do understand that Dr. King was marching for civil rights because people that looked like me were being beaten," she said.
"Dogs were being sicked on them. Basic human rights were being withheld from these people merely because the colour of their skin."
"So let's not equate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a humanitarian and Nobel Peace Prize winner, to the vagina-grabbing President Donald Trump," she concluded.
It was too early for the foolishness https://t.co/nP5iqI5GAi— Symone D. Sanders (@SymoneDSanders) April 13, 2017
Embarrassing: why does CNN allow this (via Skype). There are thoughtful, credible R's who can talk about the health care debate. https://t.co/7KvoqUFbxT— Soledad O'Brien (@soledadobrien) April 13, 2017
Lord continued to attempt to prove his point, claiming President Trump is using the same methods as Martin Luther King did for civil rights.
Lord seemed unaware, as Indy100 put it, Trump is "probably among the worst role models to have taken the Oval Office".
"What Donald Trump is doing is he's in over his head," Sanders said.
"He doesn't understand that health care is a complicated issue. ... And he doesn't understand that these are people's lives."
In an editorial published after the fact, Lord attempted to explain his position, but somehow just kept digging.
"I was doing the appearance via Skype, which doesn't allow me to see the faces of those I am speaking with," he wrote.
"Whether he knows it or not (and I suspect not) President Trump is using Dr. King's strategy - in Dr. King's own words -- 'to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation'.
Why I Compared Trump to MLK now posted atCNN https://t.co/b4jyFJalq7— Jeff Lord (@realJeffreyLord) April 13, 2017
Access to affordable healthcare remains a big issue for Americans, particularly the poor. According to new statistics, the number of Americans without health insurance rose, and concern remains that number is only going to rise.
Further chipping away at his predecessor's legacy, President Donald Trump signed legislation overnight that lets states deny federal family planning money to Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers. Trump's action erases a rule, finalised shortly before President Barack Obama left office in January, that said states could not block the money. It's the latest Obama regulation that Trump has overturned.
As the backlash continued over with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Lord claimed he was being "misrepresented". But there was no way out.
"You hear people rewriting history, and this is so, so fundamentally unjust, this is intellectually dishonest, this is an epidemic of anti intellectualism, and even more importantly, from somebody like Jeffrey, they need to know its disrespectful," politician and lawyer Bakari Sellers told Anderson Cooper.
"People died so that I could sit here. It's an affront, and I dare not let it go."
- Additional reporting by AP