Presidential advisor wonders: 'Is Abraham Lincoln a racist'?

Presidential advisor wonders: 'Is Abraham Lincoln a racist'?
Image via Screegrab.

Senior advisor for President Donald Trump's 2020 campaign, Katrina Pierson, has pushed back on criticism about the low number of Black people in the administration by comparing the Trump administration to that of President Lincoln more than 150 years prior. 


The comments came up on "Politics Nation" on MSNBC this Saturday, as host Reverend Al Sharpton attempted to get Pierson and panelist David Brock of Media Matters fo America to name a single black staff member of the President. 

"Historically, Republicans and Democrats have had major figures of the black community in the West Wing as part of their senior staff and administration," said Sharpton. "Who are the blacks in the West Wing under President Trump?"

Pierson countered, "You mean those who took the job or those who were offered? Because those are two entirely different questions." 

"Everything has to be made about race, reverend... I'm not going to participate if you're going to continue to paint this president as racist." 

Sharpton tried to move away from the discussion to a point, turning to Brock to ask how Trump could really ask for black votes without having black people in the West Wing. 

Pierson jumped in, "there's plenty of black people in the West Wing."

"Well, I asked you to name them," replied Sharpton.

"I'm not going to participate in the attempt to make this all about race," said Pierson. "It is ridiculous. How many black people were in Abraham Lincoln's West Wing?"

"Is Abraham Lincoln a racist because he didn't have a black person in his White House? This is insane. This is an insane discussion," added Pierson.

"You can't name a black in the West Wing because we can't find one, Katrina," responded Sharpton. "I pity you. I'd sympathize with you, but telling me you applied, and other people? Come on. It's unthinkable in the 21st century that even a spokesperson for President Trump can't name a black in the West Wing."

There was not, technically a "west wing" staff under Abraham Lincoln, That did not start in its modern configuration until the presidency of Theodore Roosevelt.

View the exchange below:



Understand the importance of honest news ?

So do we.

The past year has been the most arduous of our lives. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to be catastrophic not only to our health - mental and physical - but also to the stability of millions of people. For all of us independent news organizations, it’s no exception.

We’ve covered everything thrown at us this past year and will continue to do so with your support. We’ve always understood the importance of calling out corruption, regardless of political affiliation.

We need your support in this difficult time. Every reader contribution, no matter the amount, makes a difference in allowing our newsroom to bring you the stories that matter, at a time when being informed is more important than ever. Invest with us.

Make a one-time contribution to Alternet All Access, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.

Click to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card
Donate by Paypal

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.