On Tuesday night’s CNN Tonight With Don Lemon during the 10pm hour, host Don Lemon led a discussion on DACA, arguing that Trump must be racist for even broaching rescinding the controversial immigration act. Of course his panel ate up the anti-Trump rhetoric, with senior political analyst David Gergen going so far as to say that your opinion on DACA revealed whether or not you “have a respect for minorities” and “whether you have a belief in diversity.”
After just a few minutes covering the impending category five Hurricane Irma, Lemon shifted gears to talk about “the political storms raging tonight,” with reporters Dana Bash, Manu Raju and political analyst David Gergen. After criticizing Trump for threatening to leave the DACA decision to Congress, Dana Bash said that would be hard to square away for Trump’s supporters, who are “apoplectic” about letting dreamers stay in this country.
Gergen then blasted Trump for creating “uncertainty” for “tens of thousands of lives of young people in this country” who are heading off to college and “have no idea” whether or not they’ll be deported. “I don’t think there are a lot of excuses for wavering at the expense of people’s lives,” Gergen wagered.
Lemon then read President Obama’s Facebook post last night condemning Trump for considering rescinding DACA. Lemon called it “forceful” and “very clear,” before getting Gergen’s take on Obama’s statement.
Gergen obliged with a glowing review of Obama’s words, arguing that Trump’s “values” are anti-minority and anti-diversity, and don’t resonate with most Americans who “are closer to President Obama’s values.”
“[I]f you’re not white, you’re not especially welcome,” Gergen claimed about the messaging from the White House.
LEMON: David Gergen, what do you think of this rare review from the former president?
GERGEN: I thought he was eloquent and he was right. This is one of the most cruel acts we've seen in the presidency in a long time. President Obama and president Trump not only disagree on policies, they disagree on values. It goes to very basic things, whether you have a respect for minorities, whether you have a belief in diversity, whether you think this country should welcome and continue to hold up the statue of liberty as a symbol of what we believe in.
To go back to what you started with, Don, I'm afraid since Charlottesville and the talk about the white supremacists and putting them on the same level as protesters, we've seen now a series of -- Arpaio and now this. I don't know what it's like to be a minority person in this country, and I just often wonder about it, but I must say if I were in your shoes, and you can speak to this, I would feel increasingly there is a sign out there that's been hung up in the White House or outside the White House saying, if you're not white, you're not especially welcome. That is so sad. It's just not who we are. The vast majority of American people do not believe that. They are much closer to president Obama's values.
Lemon agreed, saying that “the vast majority of American people,” are “appalled” by Trump’s actions. He repeated an inflammatory question he led with twice at the beginning of the show, asking, “What does this say to Americans of color?” He answered his own question: “It says, what you said, you’re not wanted,” Lemon stated.
If you don't want to listen to the words, just look at the policies. Look at the policies that have been put into place mostly by executive action that they have said now was illegal when President Obama did it, but when this president does an executive action, it's all of a sudden not illegal and should be law. Its hypocritical
Later on in the same hour with guest Fareed Zakaria, Lemon made the same allegation again, more forcefully:
Don't you think those signals-- if you're a person of color in this country-- what does it say to you? We're not just talking about rhetoric, what you see on the campaign trail. These are actual policies you're trying to put in place. This is not an executive order by him, but he's pawning it off on someone else. What does this say to you if you're not white-- specifically a white male American or just a white American? If you’re a person of color?