There comes a time when a network has to take action against one of their panel members, because they routinely stray from the topic at hand, invent historical analogies and fabricate events that never took place, and refuse to answer simple questions.
I thought Jeffrey Lord couldn't sink any lower than this battle with Van Jones, but I was wrong.
Cable news has been flooded with coverage of Donald Trump's racist attacks on Judge Curiel, the judge in the civil lawsuit against Trump University. Many Republican leaders have spoken out against Trump's racism, from Speaker Paul Ryan to Newt Gingrich to Karl Rove to the women of Outnumbered. Surfing the cable news dial, you couldn't find anyone that believed Donald Trump was justified in claiming that the judge wouldn't "treat him fairly" because of his Mexican heritage.
But last night during CNN's Super Tuesday coverage, Trump supporter and frequent CNN analyst Jeffrey Lord took over a segment about the criticisms Trump faced.
It began with an innocent enough question from Michael Smerconish who said,
"..there's a question that Donald Trump can't answer which is, if he believes that this gentleman (Judge Curiel) is biased against him, why hasn't his legal team gone to court, followed the process and filed a recusal motion? The lawyers won't touch it and he has no response to that question."
That's as straightforward a question on Trump's bias claims that anyone could make. If he is so unhappy and feels unfairly victimized by a biased judge, then why don't Trump's lawyers make a trial motion to remove him?
Jeffrey Lord ignored the question entirely and started dreaming aloud about how Trump would put his stamp on the Republican party like Ronald Reagan did. No, he really did.
And then he veered deeper into crazy town by claiming that many conservatives and the Republican party have...
"sold out on race. They have bought into this whole notion of identity politics. It's bad."
So it's not Trump who is bad for smearing a judge, who was born in America, for being unfit to try his case because of his Mexican heritage, but it's the entire Republican establishment and grassroots for acknowledging his racism.
He then sunk deeper into the psyche of his twisted mind.
"It's a descendant of slavery and segregation it should get no where near the party of Abraham Lincoln."
It's not Donald Trump who has sunk into a quagmire of racism, but everybody else, because he's a fighter against racism by making racist attacks on Judge Curiel. You know, just like those horrible liberals, who attack police chiefs as racist.
He refused to answer the question and the CNN election night coverage panel melted down into an embarrassment. Every one of the panel members confronted Lord, including S.E. Cupp, who couldn't believe what he was saying.
And just as shocking as his responses was the CNN producers that let this travesty go on for over twenty straight minutes. TWENTY MINUTES.
It was an Abbott and Costello "Who's on First" routine that was neither funny or intelligent, but denigrated the entire seventy years long civil rights struggle in America.
The humiliating segment could be boiled down to this single outrageous statement by Lord, when he responded to Van Jones objections about Trump, saying, “It wasn’t racist, he’s calling attention to racism! Hello! Hello!”
UPDATE: Here is a bit of very telling dialogue from this travesty, including S.E. Cupp's takedown of Lord.
SMERCONISH: That is not an answer...why hasn't the motion been filed?
LORD: Look look look look...this man is a lifetime member of the Hispanic Bar Association...
VAN JONES: Nothing wrong with that.
LORD: ...which on July 2nd of last year, put out a statement saying that there should be a boycott of all Trump properties .
CUPP; That is also not an answer to Michael's question.
LORD: What his lawyers are going to do (overtalk)...
SMERCONISH: I am an attorney. If I were HIS attorney, I could not say, I would run afoul of the Code of Conduct if I were saying extra judicially what he is saying.
LORD: He is running for President of the United States.
LORD: Are we going to have a Judiciary that is infected by racial politics?
CUPP: This is a total distraction from both Michael's question and what the hell this has to do with the actual case - nothing - and the notion of Donald Trump out of one side of his mouth saying 'Hispanics love me, they are going to vote for me because I have not said anything disparaging' to him now saying 'this Hispanic hates me because I have said disparaging things' . You can't have it both ways. You can't be winning the Hispanic vote and having Hispanics love you and have THIS Hispanic be biased because you have said things disparaging about Hispanics. It's a total admission and I think it really has him spooked and you know it has him spooked because he is using a teleprompter tonight which is a complete defeat. I mean, he is going to look so small, standing at this rally on such a big night, speaking from a prompter, with all of the excitement completely out of his sails because he has been spooked by this. It was near universal condemnation and even you Jeffrey, you cannot spin his way out of this.
LORD: (silent stare of defeat at S.E. Cupp)
stop transcript at 4:00
restart at 4:50
VAN JONES:Has Trump ever said anything about race that is wrong?
LORD: He hasn't said that much about race.
VAN JONES: (eye roll and look back in shock)
(laughter from panel)
(look of disbelief on Lords face)
As Hillary Clinton has said about Trump, I will leave it to the psychiatrists to figure out exactly what is wrong with Jeffrey Lord.
But WTF, CNN? You have just as much to answer for as this Neanderthal, because you gave him this much airtime. This was an important, historic night in the history of the United States, and your coverage was hijacked by a paid partisan who is either consciously disruptive, or else is just plain crazy. In either event, you have no business putting him on your network, and his fellow-panel members should refuse to appear with him ever again.
Shame on you, CNN. Shame.