A former deputy campaign manager for Donald Trump told a black Democratic strategist that he was out of his “cotton-picking mind” during a heated panel debate concerning the president’s immigration rhetoric on Fox & Friends.
The New York Daily News reports that David Bossie and Joel Payne were discussing former CIA Director Michael Hayden’s tweet of a photo of the World War II Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz with the caption, “Other governments have separated mothers and children.”
It was a clear response to Trump’s policy of separating children from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border, an inhumane move that has drawn comparisons to some of the most horrific human rights violations in history.
That did not set well with Bossie, the former Trump campaign aide and now Trump TV apologist.
“Michael Hayden posted a picture of Auschwitz,” Bossie said.
Payne quickly interrupted, “Yeah, that liberal Michael Hayden, that screaming liberal Michael Hayden.”
And that is where Bossie went all white-man with it: “Look, you’re out of your cotton-picking mind.”
Obviously, Payne didn’t take that so well.
“Cotton-picking mind? Brother, let me tell you something. I got some relatives who picked cotton,” he said. “And I’m not going to allow you to attack me like that on TV.”
Here’s how the Daily News explains the exchange:
Ed Henry, a Fox News host and the discussion’s moderator, issued a statement once the show returned from a commercial break and said that while he wasn’t sure what Bossie meant by the phrase, it “clearly offended” Payne and others.
“I want to make sure that Fox News and this show, myself, we don’t agree with that particular phrase,” he said. “It was obviously offensive and these debates get fiery, that’s unfortunate. We like to have honest and spirited debates, but not phrases like that, obviously. And so I will just leave it at that.”
The network doubled down in distancing itself from Bossie’s comments in a statement that labeled his words “deeply offensive and wholly inappropriate.”
“His remarks do not reflect the sentiments of Fox News and we do not in any way condone them,” a spokesperson told the Daily News.
OK, sir. Sure. Where is that side-eye emoji when I need it?