CNN anchor Victor Blackwell gives emotional on-air defense of hometown Baltimore after Trump attacks
The hearing held by House Democrats targeted the administration’s immigration policies and the rapidly deteriorating conditions in detention centers.
CNN anchor Victor Blackwell gave a tearful defense Saturday morning of his hometown of Baltimore after President Donald Trump attacked the city in a tweet.
Trump, in slamming Democratic rival U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings, criticized the lawmaker’s district, which includes parts of Baltimore, as “a disgusting, rat and rodent infested mess.” He also claimed that “no human would want to live there” and that the district is “far worse and more dangerous” than conditions on the U.S. southern border with Mexico.
Blackwell delivered news of Trump’s tweet live on CNN while pointing out other instances in which Trump attacked minorities using the term “infestation.”
But he grew emotional when it came to his hometown of Baltimore, saying:
“The president says about congressman Cummings’ district that no human would want to live there. You know who did, Mr. President? I did. From the day I was brought home from the hospital, to the day I left for college and a lot of people I care about still do. There are challenges, no doubt. But people are proud of their community. I don’t want to sound self-righteous, but people get up and go to work there, they care for their families there, they love their children who pledge allegiance to the flag just like people who live in districts of congressmen who support you, sir. They are Americans too.”
Trump’s tweet drew backlash from members of Congress and the mayor of Baltimore, Bernard C. “Jack” Young, who called Trump “a disappointment to the people of Baltimore, our country, and to the world.”
It’s completely unacceptable for the political leader of our country to denigrate a vibrant American City like Baltimore, and to viciously attack U.S. Representative Elijah Cummings a patriot and a hero. pic.twitter.com/TJdbST6Md9
Cummings, who has been a prominent Trump critic, represents part of Baltimore and its suburbs. According to Census data, Cummings’ district is 53% black. He responded by stating his devotion to his constituents while asking the president to take action on lowering drug prices.
“Mr. President, I go home to my district daily. Each morning, I wake up, and I go and fight for my neighbors,” Cummings said in a tweet. “It is my constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. But, it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents.”
Mr. President, I go home to my district daily. Each morning, I wake up, and I go and fight for my neighbors.
It is my constitutional duty to conduct oversight of the Executive Branch. But, it is my moral duty to fight for my constituents.