Don Lemon Disgusted by Trump’s Jabs at Lincoln’s ‘Questionable’ Legacy: ‘Pathetic and Unworthy of His Office’


CNN host Don Lemon went off on President Donald Trump’s comments about Abraham Lincoln, in which the 45th president cast doubts about the 16th president’s performance while in the White House, saying: “He did good, although it’s always questionable.”

Trump’s decidedly vague and skeptical assessment of Lincoln — who, in his first term, led the country through the Civil War and saved the Union, issued the Emancipation Proclamation, and officially abolished slavery with the passage of the landmark 13th Amendment — came during a Fox News interview and drew mild pushback from Harris Faulkner. “Well, we are free, Mr. President, so he did pretty well,” she noted.

Lincoln is also almost universally judged as being among the best — if not the best — U.S. president among historical rankings. Lemon contrasted that legacy with Trump’s latest performance in CNN’s polling, which found that 63% of American disapprove of how he is handling race relations.

“He just won’t hear them. You can hear him, right? You can hear him comparing himself to President Lincoln. Lincoln who freed thousands and thousands of enslaved black people?” an incredulous Lemon said, before zeroing in on Trump’s veiled jabs at Lincoln.

“‘Questionable?’ Lincoln’s legacy is ‘questionable?’ That’s pathetic. Really. Pathetic and unworthy of his office,” Lemon spat out. “I don’t know whether this president is questioning the legacy of Lincoln or whether he can’t admit anybody was a better president.”

“Then there’s what the president says about police using chokeholds, a tactic that has become a symbol of brutality,” the CNN host said, pivoting to the nationwide unrest protesting police misconduct and racial injustice. “Cities and communities across the country including Philadelphia, Phoenix, L.A., Sacramento. Look on the map. San Diego, Miami, Broward County [Fla.], Chicago, Washington D.C., Minneapolis, New York City, Denver, Houston, and Austin. All banning chokeholds. And the president said he thinks, generally speaking chokeholds, should be banned. But he also says this: ‘I think the concept of chokeholds sounds so innocent and perfect. You realize if it’s a one-on-one. Two-on-one that’s a different story. Depending on the toughness and strength. We’re talking about toughness and strength.

“It really doesn’t sound so innocent and perfect to someone who can’t breathe. To someone who is literally having the life choked out of them,” Lemon added, clearly alluding to the alleged murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer who pinned Floyd’s neck to the pavement for nearly nine minutes.

Watch the video above, via CNN.

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