President Donald Trump had a chaotic day, from holding a summit with far-right online activists, to announcing executive action to gather citizenship data in place of the rejected census question, to letting his administration release information on upcoming immigration raids.
There is a method to the madness, argued New York Times editor Patrick Healy on CNN’s “OutFront.”
“I want to start with the big picture here,” said host Erin Burnett. “You have this social media summit, right, that is — was extremists. You have the immigration raids, which obviously if you’re really raiding and targeting you wouldn’t announce. An executive order to collect citizenship data. All of this coming days before Mueller’s big testimony. And we certainly don’t know everything he is going to say but the bottom line is he couldn’t exonerate the president. Coincidence that all this is happening now?”
“Not a coincidence at all — this is classic Trump political playbook,” said Healy. “His two big strategies, that he saw as what won him the presidency in 2016 was targeting immigrants and sowing division.”
“He is doing it now with immigrants by ordering the ICE raids, which have been done in past under prove administrations,” said Healy. “But he makes it sound as if he in his — his immigration team are going into cities to be willing to take families, you know, out of these places and deport them. And then also going hard at this citizenship census question.”
“On the sowing division front. He brings in right wing extremists, fearmongers, basically people making their careers out of making things up on the Internet in order to sow disinformation and divide people, and playing into this sense of grievance that he has done over and over again,” continued Healy. “It is sort of a classic Trump playbook strategy. And it’s exactly right. It’s coming right before a week that is, you know, a week he has wanted to avoid, let’s face it, for a year and a half, having Robert Mueller get up in front of the entire world and say in detail what he found.”
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During the Tuesday night "hand-off" between CNN's Chris Cuomo and Don Lemon, the two chuckled about former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, who made his "Dancing with the Stars" debut Monday night. Spicer bragged about being a "staunch Christian," as the reason for why he won't win "Dancing with the Stars." But Cuomo chastised Spicer for trying to score votes.
Trump adviser ties his tongue in knots trying to explain away the president’s anti-Hispanic racism
On Monday night, President Donald Trump received heavy criticism after a rally in New Mexico in which he turned to one of his Hispanic advisers, Steve Cortes, said he "looks more like a WASP than I do," and asked him "Who do you like more, the country or the Hispanics?"
Talking with CNN's Chris Cuomo on Tuesday, Cortes was completely undeterred from going to bat for Trump against accusations of racism.
"Forget about how he put what he put to you last night. He's not the greatest wordsmith. It was a little clumsy, you recognize that, none of that matters to me," said Cuomo. "Here's what matters to me. How can the Latino community believe that he loves them when he has said so many anti-Mexican and even anti-Puerto Rican things, how can he love Latinos when she's shown such animosity?"
Rick Santorum rips into Corey Lewandowski’s ‘flippant’ admission that he’s happy to lie to the media
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On CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360," even former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), a staunch defender of the president, was aghast at this.
"Senator, isn't it kind of a weird way to run for Senate by admitting that you're happy to lie to the American people?" asked Cooper. "I know he was phrasing it as lying to the media, lying to reporters, but, you know, it's not as if — the end result is you're lying to the American people. You are giving people false information. And you're fine with that? You have no moral problem with that?"