So much has happened in the past week—er, day—since the start of Michael Cohen’s testimony before the House Oversight and Reform Committee. Rep. Rashida Tlaib called out Rep. Mark Meadows for his racist attempt at denying that President Trump is a racist! The internet exposed Meadows in not one but two racist video clips in which he promises to send President Obama back to Kenya! Meadows promised that he doesn’t have one single “racial” bone in his body!
Appearing on CNN on Thursday morning, Tlaib didn’t back down when asked by host Alisyn Camerota if she still believed that Meadows “engaged in a racist act” by bringing to the hearing a black former Trump employee and current Department of Housing and Urban Development staffer, Lynne Patton, to counter Cohen’s claim that Trump was racist.
“I believe that that moment, as a person of color, and not only myself, two, three other of my colleagues had mentioned how insensitive that act was. I think all of us, I mean, even folks at home kind of gasped when that actually happened,” Tlaib said. “I think if we want to talk about race in this country, that was not the way do it.”
Camerota went on to mention Patton’s own response to the Tlaib’s argument against Meadows. The HUD staffer went on Fox & Friends this morning to refute that Trump was racist, and criticized Tlaib for calling her a “prop” and for believing the claims of Cohen, “a self-confessed perjurer and criminally convicted white man,” over herself, a “highly-educated” black woman.
“To me...that’s more racist than being put up there as a ‘prop,’” Patton said.
Tlaib said that she wanted Patton to know she meant no disrespect to her, and that she should be commended for her work. However, Tlaib also said she didn’t regret apologizing to Meadows if she made him feel that she was calling him a racist, and that she saw it as a “teachable moment.”
When Camerota played one of the clips of Meadows saying Obama was going to go back to Kenya and asked Tlaib if that changed her mind about Meadows being racist, she dodged the question, saying that she and other people of color in Congress were there to show their white colleagues how to talk about race.
“Look, I feel like the act was, and that’s up to the American people to decide whether or not he is,” Tlaib said when pressed again about whether she felt Meadows is racist.
Despite Meadows’ sputtering response to being called out for his racist behavior, it seems that the House members may have already talked it out. According to the Washington Post’s Paul Kane, the two were seen hugging on the House floor and “engaged in a long, cordial talk.” Fellow freshman Democratic Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell said Meadows “seemed very genuine.”
Hope for Meadows to legitimately apologize for all of the racist things he’s done and said? That remains to be seen.