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Tongue-tied GOP strategist crashes and burns on-air while trying to deny Trump’s racism

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Republican strategist Amy Tarkanian crashed and burned on CNN on Saturday while attempting to deny President Donald Trump’s racism.

“I do not believe that the president’s tweets were racist. I do believe they were not well thought out. He needs that extra, ‘Are you sure?’ button on Twitter,” Tarkanian argued.

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“I’m a black man, I’m a Republican and a black man,” the Rev. Joe Watkins interjected. “My mother’s an immigrant, I would be angry if someone said that to my mother.”

“Oh, it’s very offensive. But he did not say, because you are this color, go back to where you came from,” Tarkanian argued. “I’m not supporting that tweet. Was it racist? No. Was it stupid? Yes.”

“The tweet was racist,” Watkins declared.

If Tarkanian did not even view Trump’s attacks as racist, anchor Kendis Gibson attempted to find out what it would take for her to consider a comment racist.

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“Let me ask you this. What is a racist comment? What would you say?” Gibson asked.

“I’m not going to make a racist comment, are you crazy?” she replied.

“Define what is a racist comment,” Gibson said.

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“Okay, I am not going to go down that direction at all,” she replied.

Watkins, a fellow Republican who served in the George H.W. Bush administration and was once the party’s nominee to be lieutenant governor of Pennsylvania, had a far different take.

“If someone says something that’s racist, it’s racist — and you ought to call it out for what it is. Maybe they’ll hear what you’re saying and they’ll not do it anymore,” Watkins suggested.

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But Tarkanian refused to take the pastor’s advice.

“I have met the president on numerous occasions, I have even been in a house of prayer with the president and worshipped along his side. He’s not a racist, he’s not xenophobic, he’s not a religious bigot of any sort,” Tarkanian claimed.

In March, Tarkanian also struggled to defend Trump’s racism during an appearance on MSNBC.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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Trump is completely melting down — here are the 6 craziest tweets he’s made just this morning

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China's decision to slap new tariffs on $75 billion worth of American goods on Friday sent President Donald Trump into a downward mental spiral, as he was reduced to tweeting out unhinged orders and proclamations while the stock market has been plummeting downward.

On Friday morning, the president sent out a string of angry and nonsensical tweets that included attacks on the Chinese government and his own Federal Reserve chairman, as well as bizarre new orders to postal carriers.

Below, we'll recap the six craziest things Trump tweeted on Friday morning alone.

1.) Trump declares his own Federal Reserve chairman to be an "enemy." Trump was very angry that Federal Reserve Chairman Jay Powell did not immediately order deep interest rate cuts to combat a potential economic downturn, and the president was not shy about denouncing him in very pointed terms.

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George Conway fears Trump is ‘psychologically decompensating before our very eyes’

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President Donald Trump spent Friday morning melting down on Twitter as he watches bad economic news pour in, and conservative attorney George Conway worries he's suffering a mental breakdown.

Economists have been sounding alarms about a possible recession ahead of the 2020 election, and Trump has been alternately insisting things are fine while also trying to lay blame for a downturn at the feet of his political enemies.

Trump snapped at his own Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell, who has resisted pressure by the president to lower interest rates, and attacked Chinese leader Xi Jinping over a new round of tariffs in an escalating trade war.

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Fox’s Chris Wallace stunned as ‘flailing’ Trump tries to order around US companies while the stock market plunges

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Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace seemed stunned by a series of angry tweets from Donald Trump on Friday morning, first attacking Fed Chair Jerome Powell for not lowering interest rates than exploding at China over a new round of tariffs.

Speaking with host Sandra Smith, Wallace sat and listened as she read off the president's Twitter complaints about economic events beyond his control, including one telling U.S. companies to take their manufacturing business elsewhere.

"We are just all learning of this at the same time, but the best I can tell, the American president can’t order U.S. companies how they’re going to do their sales and where they’re going to have their supply chains," Wallace lectured. "We have a free-market capitalist system."

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