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CNN’s Don Lemon excoriated Donald Trump’s Arizona campaign rally speech on Tuesday night, describing the president as “unhinged,” “petty” and “a child” who gave an address that was “a total eclipse of the facts.”
Lemon took particular exception to Trump’s attempt to absolve his missteps in the aftermath of a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville that turned violent, suggesting that the president was trying to “rewrite history” by leaving out some of his actions in the aftermath.
The president was widely criticized for his belated and tepid response to the violence in Charlottesville that left one anti-Nazi protester dead. Trump’s initial reluctance to condemn neo-Nazis, white supremacists and the KKK, as well as his “both sides” comment that many saw as drawing a moral equivalence between those groups and protestors, was met with universal opprobrium. Trump failed to mention the “both sides” controversy in Arizona, instead focusing his ire on the media, which he blamed for misrepresenting his statement.
Lemon felt Trump’s words had “reopened the race wound” of Charlottesville but moreover, the president’s performance was another reminder that he wasn’t fit for the role, describing him as “unhinged” and “embarrassing.”
Lemon’s full comments, as well as a video of the segment, are below:
I’m just going to speak from the heart here. What we have witnessed is a total eclipse of the facts.
Someone who came out onstage and lied directly the American people and left things out that he said in an attempt to rewrite history, especially when it comes to Charlottesville.
He’s unhinged, it’s embarrassing and I don’t mean for us, the media, because he went after us, but for the country. This is who we elected president of the United States. A man who is so petty that he has to go after people he deems to be his enemy, like an imaginary friend of a 6-year-old. His speech was without thought, was without reason, it was devoid of facts, it was devoid of wisdom. There was no gravitas, there was no sanity there, he was like a child blaming a sibling on something else, “he did it, I didn’t do it.” He certainly reopened the race wound from Charlottesville.
A man clearly wounded by the rational people who are abandoning him in droves, meaning those business people and the people in Washington know who are questioning his fitness for office and whether he is stable.
A man backed into a corner it seems by circumstances beyond his control and beyond his understanding. That’s the truth. If you watch that speech as an American, you had to be thinking “what in the world is going on?”
This is the person we elected as president of the United States? This petty? This small? The person who is supposed to pull the country together? Certainly didn’t happen there.
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