Lemon and Liberal Panelist Brawl Over Who’s to Blame for GOP SCOTUS Success

In the wake of Justice Anthony Kennedy’s retirement announcement on Wednesday, and realization that President Trump would get a second conservative nomination, the liberals were torn between organizing a feeble resistance and eating their own. This was obvious in the massive flare up on CNN Tonight where host Don Lemon and Democratic strategist Symone Sanders blew up at each other over who was to blame for allowing Republicans to get control of the White House.

Their explosive back-and-forth was on a long fuse but it was what was obvious from the start was that both were ready for a fight. “You know I said in the opening of the show tonight, it makes it pretty clear that elections have real consequences, what are some of those consequences Symone,” Lemon asked. Sanders responded by recalling the “hot takes” she saw on Twitter blaming Sanders and Jill Stein supporters for Hillary Clinton’s embarrassing defeat, but she blamed the party’s GOTV effort.

So are you saying it wasn't Bernie's fault without saying it wasn’t Bernie’s fault,” Lemon asked with a lot of snark. “I don't think that's anything I need to say, Don, because it's ridiculous to assert it was Senator Sanders['s] fault,” Sanders bitterly shot back while hilariously declaring the Democratic Party didn’t have an identity crisis.

Lemon then directly called out Bernie supports by citing Wednesday’s outcry on social media:

Listen, I hear what you’re saying and I saw that on social media. And I got a lot of messages as well and pretty much everyone was in agreement. Not in what you said, the opposite way or the protest vote. And they were asking all the people who were screaming “Bernie, Bernie, Bernie” at the convention after Hillary Clinton got the nomination if they’re happy with themselves.

 

 

He even threw in the classic “I’m just saying that, it’s not me.

Their conflict simmered down a bit as Lemon shifted to letting conservative guest Michael Shields speak. Lemon eventually began taking thinly veiled shots at Bernie supporters for not being able to take in the larger picture like Republicans could. “I'm saying you're making a good point that people on the other side should be listening to about strategy, about long-term goals, about playing the long game. About not having a litmus test for candidates,” he opined.

Sanders immediately caught onto Lemon’s shots and, despite originally claiming the Dems didn’t have an identity crisis, she whined about the party having different wings. “To equate what Republican Party to the Democratic Party I think is not understanding how the parties are, in fact, made up,” she declared after bragging about teaching a class at Harvard.

The yelling only got worse as Lemon questioned the “strategy” and “intelligence” of Bernie supporters:

Symone, I disagree with you. Listen, it’s not understanding how elections work and how elections have consequences. Because there were people, who on the Democratic side, many of them, including Bernie Sanders supporters who were shouting down allies, Hillary Clinton.

Sanders tried to tone down the situation by trying to explain to Lemon that Democrats “cannot allow the Republican Party and Donald Trump to change the face of courts for a generation.” “He already has,” Lemon shot back.

I'm comparing the two parties. You say there's no comparison, but one of them won. They're getting two Supreme Court nominations, judges, justices, maybe a third. The other party lost and are getting zero,” Lemon bitterly lamented as the fight finally petered out.

Clearly, the added benefit of getting yet another conservative on the Supreme Court is getting to watch liberal tear themselves apart.

The relevant portions of the transcript are below, click "expand" to read:

 

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CNN Tonight
June 27, 2018
10:30:58 PM Eastern [2 minutes 15 seconds]

(…)

DON LEMON: Good evening to all of you. Everybody's smiling, I thought Symone you might be a little sad, I'm not sure.

SYMONE SANDERS: You know I got off the plane in Indianapolis, Don and I was just slightly devastated by the Supreme Court news, but we're ready to fight.

LEMON: Okay. Well, listen, at least your smiling. You know I said in the opening of the show tonight, it makes it pretty clear that elections have real consequences, what are some of those consequences Symone?

SANDERS: I want to be clear. I know saw a lot of hot takes, if you will, on Twitter and on many networks that noted that -- Progressives we’re out here, and Democrats, were saying that is the fought of folks that didn't vote for Hillary Clinton; that chose a third-party candidate. And What I would like to say is elections do have consequences. But I want to remind people that Hillary Clinton won the popular vote. Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton via the electoral college. So the fact of the matter is, going forward, everything that we're seeing is a result of who the president is. So who the president is matters because his powers matter, who he can put in office matters.

LEMON: So are you saying it wasn't Bernie's fault without saying it wasn’t Bernie’s fault? Is that what you’re…

SANDERS: I don't think that's anything I need to say, Don, because it's ridiculous to assert it was Senator Sander's fault. The fact is though, Don, people talk about the identity crisis in the Democratic Party today, we don't have an identity crisis. We are very clear. And the facts of the matter are that the list that Donald Trump has put forward for Supreme Court – for potential Supreme Court justices are a list of conservative ideologies, not mainstream jurists.

(…)

LEMON: Listen, I hear what you’re saying and I saw that on social media. And I got a lot of messages as well and pretty much everyone was in agreement. Not in what you said, the opposite way or the protest vote. And they were asking all the people who were screaming “Bernie, Bernie, Bernie” at the convention after Hillary Clinton got the nomination if they’re happy with themselves. (…) I’m just saying that, it’s not me. But that seems to be the consensus here.

(…)

10:35:02 PM Eastern [3 minutes 1 second]

LEMON (to Michael Shields): I'm saying you're making a good point that people on the other side should be listening to about strategy, about long-term goals, about playing the long game. About not having a litmus test for candidates. Because every Republican knew what Donald Trump said, what he stood for, a lot of them weren't on board. There were a lot of never-Trumpers, but when it came down to election time, or to back him at least in front of the cameras, what did they do? They backed him and they voted for him.

SANDERS: But Don, if I may, I just want to make a point here. I taught a whole class at Harvard about this this past semester. The fact of the matter is, the Democratic Party of despaired factions that have organized under the umbrella of quote/unquote shared values which could be debatable. You put five progressives in a room, they might tell you the party stands for five different things.

LEMON: And this is what you get.

[Crosstalk]

LEMON: But this is what you get then.

SANDERS: To equate what Republican Party to the Democratic Party I think is not understanding how the parties are, in fact, made up. The fact of the matter –

LEMON: Symone, I disagree with you. Listen, it’s not understanding how elections work and how elections have consequences. Because there were people, who on the Democratic side, many of them, including Bernie Sanders supporters who were shouting down allies, Hillary Clinton. Whether you liked Hillary Clinton or not, I’m saying the same thing I said about Donald Trump.

[Crosstalk]

SANDERS: Hold up, Don. Hold up, Don. You know I voted for Hillary. Let’s pause here.

LEMON: I am just questioning the strategy and the intelligence of shouting down an ally and damaging a campaign --

SANDERS: Oh, Lord.

LEMON: --and then all of a sudden you get this. That’s all I’m saying. Everybody jumped on the Republican side on the Donald Trump and in his bandwagon.

SANDERS: I will make a 20-point second on this. The fact of the matter is, the Democratic Party ad nauseam failed together, this is a collective effort. We failed to make the courts a motivating factor in 2016, that's a result of all the polls I’ve seen, all the focus groups I sat in, and all the many places I am at. (…) So the fact of the matter is, we can pontificate about what happened in 2016, but we're here looking at 2018 in the face. And I think Democrats do have a factor isn’t look what happened to Merrick Garland, the factor is holding the line. We cannot allow the Republican Party and Donald Trump to change the face of courts for a generation. I think that Neil Gorsuch—

LEMON: He already has.

SANDERS: I am not succeeding that fight, Don, and many Progressives themselves are still with me. That's why you saw folks like Senator Harris come out with her comments. I don't think the fight is over. I reject the notion this is all at the feet of Bernie people.

(…)

LEMON: Every little bit matters, that’s all I’m saying I'm questioning the strategy, that's it. I'm comparing the two parties. You say there's no comparison, but one of them won. They're getting two Supreme Court nominations, judges, justices, maybe a third. The other party lost and are getting zero.

(…)


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