On Wednesday's New Day show, co-hosts John Berman, Erica Hill, and John Avlon took time to fret over a clip of Attorney General Jeff Sessions insightfully pointing out the hypocrisy of liberal elites who have gone wildly over the top in attacking the Trump administration for separating illegal immigrants from their children, as required by law.
The group bristled at the Attorney General smiling while making a flippant comment about the hypocrisy as they complained that he "seemed to make a joke about the separation of children from their parents."
But, ironically, in the same segment, CNN's Jeff Toobin had himself just minutes earlier tried to injrect humor into the child separation situation as he made a crack about how long it was taking the Trump administration to reunite children with their families.
In the first of two segments that addressed the Sessions comments, Berman at 6:25 a.m. Eastern raised the issue: "I do want to listen to what the Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, said yesterday. He seemed to make a joke about the separation of children from their parents."
Then played a clip of Attorney General Sessions giving a speech in which he complained about the "hypocrisy" of the "lunatic fringe" on the left who are attacking the administration for separating children from parents during prosecutions, as he pointed out that they expect law enforcement to protect them -- which may require prosecuting American citizen criminals and separating them their children. Sessions:
These same people live in gated communities, many of them, and are featured at events where you have to have an ID to even come in and hear them speak. (smiles) They like a little security around themselves. And if you try to scale the fence, believe me, they'll be only too happy to [have you] arrested and separate you from your children.
The Attorney General was probably referring to the over the top hyperbole like that of Hollywood liberals Rob and Michele Reiner who recently likened the Trump administration to Nazi Germany, and the detention centers for immigrants to Nazi death camps.
Without giving any apparent thought to the incendiary comments that have come from the left, Berman reacted negatively: "Wow, he seemed to think it was funny, the Attorney General."
Avlon jumped in: "A badly delivered speech whose sentiment is even worse -- trying to play the limousine liberal card and the mocking people who are concerned about the separation of children from their families. That is just so far beneath what we should expect from our Attorney General."
In the next hour, during a discussion of the fact that the number of reports that allegedly only six of about 2,000 children have been returned to their parents since last week, Toobin joked that "Maybe they'll get into double digits" as a result of the recent court ruling that demands the administration return the children more quickly.
Berman soon suggested that the administration was deliberately being slow about reuniting families as he introduced the Sessions clip for the second time:
When I talk about will -- when I talk about intention -- one of the reasons you do question the intention is because of comments from the likes of the Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, who was speaking to a group, and he made a joke -- an actual joke about the separation of children from their parents.
After replaying the same clip of Sessions that was shown earlier in the show, Berman added: "It seems like that joke was written for him, which is actually interesting in and of itself."
Toobin found the comments "moronic" as he reacted: "How moronic is the comparison? You know, some people live in a gated communities, so they shouldn't care about migrant children? What? I mean, it just doesn't even make any sense."
No acknowledgement was made that Toobin himself had just minutes earlier injected levity into the conversation with his sarcastic crack about the government trying to get into double digits on the number of children returned to their parents.