Wajahat Ali, Don Lemon, and Rick Wilson

NYT contributing op-ed writer, Wajahat Ali, “CNN Tonight” host Don Lemon, and Never Trumper Rick Wilson – 1/25/2020. Screen grab via CNN.

 

Over the weekend, all three people who what Don “the dumbest man in television” Lemon’s silly little program on CNN were treated to the ugly spectacle of what people who consider themselves elite think about Trump voters, and even about people who aren’t Trump voters but live alongside them.

The subject was Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s blow out with an NPR reporter. The guests were some guy from the New York Times named Wajahat Ali and Rick Wilson who is alleged to be a Republican strategist…whatever.

Via my colleague SisterToldjah:

DON LEMON: First of all, (Mary Louise) Kelly has a masters degree in European Studies from Cambridge University. Also, he (Mike Pompeo) doesn’t really say that she couldn’t identify Ukraine on a map, he insinuates it’s just a — it’s just a petty attempt to put her down, right? Is that what this is?

RICK WILSON, REPUBLICAN STRATEGIST: Of course — of course. He’s just trying to demean her, and obviously it’s false. And, look, he also knows, deep In his heart, that Donald Trump couldn’t find Ukraine on a map if you had the letter “U” and the picture of an actual physical crane next to it. He knows that this is a, you know, an administration defined by ignorance of the world, and so that’s part of him playing to their base and playing to their audience, you know, the credulous boomer rube demo that backs Donald Trump — that wants to think that (Wilson does impersonation) “Donald Trump’s the smart one, and y’all — y’all elitists are dumb!”

Host Lemon lost control and laughed hysterically as Wilson and liberal CNN contributor Wajahat Ali went back and forth doing impersonations of Trump voters saying dumb things:

Har har har. Listen to Wajahat Ali and imagine him talking in a comic Arab accent. It’s hilarious, and I’m sure he laughs about it all the time.

While guys like Tom Nichols think this was all fun and games

In fact, when he grows up he wants to be just like them

The Washington Post disagrees:

President Trump has long argued that CNN’s coverage of him is negative because the organization thinks little of him and his supporters. A recent segment on the cable network seems to be making that case for him.

During a panel discussion about Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s tiff with an NPR reporter over her questions about Ukraine, GOP strategist Rick Wilson went from questioning Trump’s foreign affairs intelligence to describing his supporters as uninformed “hillbillies.”

Trump surrogates — including the media that supports him — have always exploited the president’s ongoing attacks on the mainstream media. Segments like the CNN one that White House aides criticized can be found almost nightly on Fox News. Hosts like Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham regularly laugh as their guests endlessly mock and disrespect the liberal Americans who find this presidency deplorable. Despite this, conservative media is likely to blow the CNN segment out of proportion to further its own narrative.

In the states where white working-class rural voters have large populations, Trump remains well-liked despite being impeached and being the object of criticism across the globe. Seeing media personalities go from criticizing the president to directly mocking his supporters, even in just this one instance, is all Trump and his team need to illustrate the president’s frequent portrayal of CNN as a media organization that not only dislikes Trump but also doesn’t value Americans who support him.

Today the RNC released an ad that ties most major Democrats securely to the position of Rick Wilson and Wajahat Ali and Don Lemon and their rank bigotry and close-mindedness. This is how RNC Chairman Ronna McDaniel described it:

The other night on CNN, Don Lemon and his liberal friends laid their cards on the table and made it obvious what ELITES think of everyday Americans who support President Trump. These radical hacks painted conservative voters as illiterate hillbillies on national television because they DESPISE President Trump and they DESPISE you.

This is the ad:

In a way, we should all chip in and sent Rick Wilson a bouquet of roses or pansies or whatever flower he prefers. Not only has he outed himself as being the furthest possible thing from a strategist–unless he’s a proponent of loser-ology, which his record indicates he might very well be–he has demonstrated to millions of voters exactly what he and the scrofulous NeverTrump bunch really and truly are. For those gifts we should be grateful. And the FEC should make the RNC declare Rick Wilson’s salary as an in-kind donation to the Donald Trump 2020 campaign.

streiff
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Former infantry officer, CGSC grad and Army Operations Center alumnus.
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