President Donald Trump is causing a nationwide whiplash with his responses to the Charlottesville violence.
His first statement declined to specifically repudiate hate groups like the Ku Klux Klan and white supremacists, and said "both sides" — as in white supremacists, neo-Nazis and hate groups and the counter-protestors demonstrating against them — were a problem. After extreme criticism, he offered up a tepid speech, calling out those groups by name.
However, shortly after condemning the hate groups, Trump attacked the “alt-left” and said “both sides are to blame” for the tragedy.
The comments once again sparked a debate regarding the president’s confusing stance on white supremacy. Former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer made an appearance on CNN to defend Trump.
CNN’s political commentator Ana Navarro was also part of the panel on the show and completely eviscerated Brewer.
The exchange began when host Don Lemon played a clip of Trump from 2015 where he was criticizing Mexican people for bringing their “problems” to the United States.
Lemon posed a question about Trump’s critics, who are saying he is focused and still thinks the same way. He also added the commander-in-chief showed Americans what he was in those comments two years ago.
However, Brewer attempted to elaborate on Trump’s comments and said, “We know that we’re not getting the best of what Mexico could send to us.”
Navarro, in return, ripped apart Trump in the most polite way.
“He showed us during the campaign over and over and over who was. We saw him boast about sexual predatory behavior,” she said. “We heard him attack Judge [Gonzalo] Curiel. We heard him attack the Khans. We heard him attack Mexicans. We heard him attack women over and over and over again. He showed us who he was.”
That was just the beginning.
“The harm he is causing this country is just too great to look the other way. And many people thought that when he entered the Oval Office, he would become presidential, that the magnitude of his office would make him change and become a presidential figure … He is not going to change, and it is time that Republicans start realizing that and stop giving him a damn chance. He’s not going to change. He will continue embarrassing us and making us feel ashamed,” Navarro continued.
Brewer lashed out at Navarro in response and said all the negative rhetoric is just “sour grapes” and is coming from the networks across the country. While struggling to answer, she further said Trump was still getting backlash because of his election win.
“Nobody is going to say that the Ku Klux Klan carrying tiki lights are good people,” Brewer said.
Lemon corrected her and said that’s exactly what Trump said in his speech just hours ago.
Navarro then took over and asked Brewer not to interrupt her because she listened to her comments with great restraint.
“If anybody is going to ask me to respect Donald Trump because he’s president, first I would say to them: Tell him to respect the presidency. Tell him to respect the American people. Tell him to treat his office with the dignity that it deserves,” Navarro said.
“Do not hold me to a higher scrutiny than you hold him! Do not hold me to a higher scrutiny when it comes to rhetoric that you hold him. He is dividing us. Not us. Believe me, I got over Jeb Bush years ago, he ran a terrible campaign. If you think this is sour grapes over Jeb Bush, are you sorely mistaken.”
“This is pain. This is pain over what is happening in the United States of America. America, a home that embraced me and is today my homeland,” concluded Navarro.
Spotlight, Banner: Reuters, Kevin Lamarque