Friday on MSNBC while discussing President Donald Trump asking African-American journalist April Ryan of the American Urban Radio Networks to set up a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) during his press conference a day earlier, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-MO) said he was “also really pleased” Trump didn’t ask her “to sweep and mop” the White House briefing room.
He went on to call Trump’s request disrespectful.
Partial transcript as follows:
MELVIN: I’m joined by two long-time members of the Congressional Black Caucus, New York Democratic Congressman Gregory Meeks and Congressman Emanuel Cleaver, Democrat from Missouri also joining me. Good to have both of you. Let me start with you here in New York, Congressman Meeks, what was your general reaction as you watched that play out yesterday?
MEEKS: It would have been funny if it wasn’t so serious. You know, to hear the president of the United States ask a reporter to reach out for a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus, who deals with legislative agenda, is kind of funny. And I would say to him, utilizing his words, you know, he should use his African-American, I think he won maybe Omarosa. Maybe she should be the person he talked to about getting together in responding to a letter the CBC sent him already on January 19 and we never got any return from him.
MELVIN: Congressman Cleaver, has there been any dialogue between your office or the CBC’s office, any sort of informal dialogue, perhaps with the new administration so far?
CLEAVER: No, I don’t think there’s been any contact or communication. I don’t even think, to be 100% honest that the president even knew what the CBC was yesterday.
MELVIN: Really, Congressman Cleaver, you don’t think that President Trump even knew that?
CLEAVER: I don’t think he had any idea and I’ve looked at that tape over and over again, and he was like, what in the world are you asking me? And had April not said Congressional Black Caucus, if she had continued to say the CBC, I think he would have said I don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m also really pleased that he didn’t ask her to sweep and mop in a room where the press conference was being held. I thought it was disrespectful.
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