From the April 13 edition of CNN's New Day:
ALISYN CAMEROTA (CO-HOST): President Trump is considering making a drastic move to try to get Obamacare repealed. He is threatening to withhold billions of dollars in subsidies that the poorest Americans rely on. President Trump telling The Wall Street Journal, “Obamacare is dead next month if it doesn't get that money. I don't want people to get hurt. What I think should happen and will happen is the Democrats will start calling me and negotiating.”
SYMONE SANDERS: Look, Alisyn, it's sad. The president sees millions of people that are benefiting from health insurance that are on the ACA [Affordable Care Act] and he sees bargaining chips. He doesn't see lives. He doesn't see that he's putting people in danger. The fact of the matter is this a wildly popular piece of legislation. It has only gotten popular with the Republicans' attempt to repeal. And so now Democrats are saying, “Look, we know Obamacare has some issues and we're willing to work with you to fix those issues.” But the administration has yet to come to the table on that and it's just sad.
CAMEROTA: But Symone, hold on. I just want to challenge what you're saying. How do you know that the president sees these people as bargaining chips? This is how he does it. He says something, generally inflammatory or at least it gets a lot of people's attention, and this certainly got [Senate Minority Leader] Chuck Schumer's attention. And then he backs off it. So Symone, I mean, why do you think that this is what we actually would see?
SANDERS: We don't know. I think we've seen a President Donald Trump who says one thing, does another. We don't know what the president would do. All we can go off of what he is saying. And currently what he's saying is, “Look, if you don't give me what I want, I'm withholding stuff from everybody.” And that is going to actually hurt people. I don't think we can use this inflammatory rhetoric, Alisyn, when we're dealing with people's lives. People with really serious illnesses, from cancer on down the line. So I think we need to just step back and the president should take a more humane tone and course of action when talking about this issue.
CAMEROTA: Jeffery, what about that, that it does scare people when they hear it? Even if it is just a negotiating tactic, it scares people.
JEFFREY LORD: Alisyn, I want to say something here that I know will probably drive Symone crazy. But think of President Trump as the Martin Luther King of health care.
SANDERS: Oh, Jeffery, Jeffrey.
LORD: When I was a kid, President Kennedy did not want to introduce the civil rights bill because he said it wasn't popular, he didn't have the votes for it, et cetera. Dr. King kept putting people in the streets in harm's way to put the pressure on so that the bill would be introduced. That's what finally worked.
SANDERS: Jeffrey, you do understand that Dr. King was marching for civil rights because people that looked like me were being beaten. Dogs were being sicked on them. Basic human rights were being withheld from these people merely because the color of their skin. So let's not equate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., a humanitarian and Nobel Peace Prize winner, to the vagina-grabbing President Donald Trump.