Marc Short, chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, argued on Sunday that New York City's controversial stop and frisk was not as racist when President Donald Trump supported it.
CNN's Dana Bash noted during an interview with Short on CNN that President Donald Trump had called Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg a "total racist" over the policy even though the president had previously praised it.
"So if supporting stop and frisk make Mike Bloomberg a 'total racist,' what does that say about President Trump?" Bash wondered.
"I think what the president said is under [former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani], stop and frisk was applied fairly," Short insisted. "Under Mayor Bloomberg, the number of African-Americans apprehended grew exponentially by four."
"And that point there were questions or not whether it was really targeted on race," he continued. "And that's what the president's complaint is."
"So you feel comfortable with [supporting stop and frisk]?" Bash asked.
"He felt the policy was executed well under Mayor Giuliani but it was abused under Mayor Bloomberg," Short said.
"But he supports the notion of stop and frisk?" Bash pressed.
Short, however, said that the president's support "depends on what the criteria are."
"You realize people look at that and say, he's calling Michael Bloomberg a racist but he's the same," Bash observed.
"I think he's been consistent," Short remarked. "It appears [Bloomberg] took it to a further extent that I think the president is uncomfortable with."