During a heated exchange that came on the heels of Donald Trump’s Super Tuesday victory press conference, Trump-backing CNN contributor Jeffrey Lord attempted to turn the tables on those who are criticizing Trump for not more aggressively disavowing his endorsement from former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke.
Lord’s comments came after progressive commentator Van Jones criticized Trump for dog whistling about race, saying, “When [Trump] is playing funny with the Klan, that is not cool.”
“When you talk about terrorism, [Trump] gets passionate, he says, ‘No, this is wrong.’ When you talk about the Klan, ‘Oh, I don’t know, I don’t know,’” Jones continued. “You came on the air and said this is just like when Reverend [Jeremiah] Wright was speaking. Reverend Wright never lynched anybody, never killed anybody.”
In response, Lord, who last year characterized Trump’s comment that Mexicans illegally crossing the border are “rapists” as “exactly right if deeply politically incorrect,” tried to connect the KKK with the Democratic Party.
“Don’t hide and say that’s not part of the base of the Democratic Party,” Lord said. “They were the military arm, the terrorist arm of the Democratic Party, according to historians. For God’s sake read your history.”
Lord went on to suggest the KKK used to kill black people “to further the progressive agenda.”
But Jones retorted by suggesting Lord was trying to obfuscate the Republican Party’s race problem by making explosive claims about the past.
“First off, that is so absurd,” Jones said. “That’s not the Democratic Party of today, so what are you talking about that for?… You play these games.”
Lord has used his role at CNN to defend Trump and peddle debunked research about undocumented immigrants — practices that have resulted in him being repeatedly criticized by Media Matters for America.