On CNN's New Day, former South Carolina Republican Rep. Mark Sanford falsely claimed Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA) called for people to “go after the kids of cabinet members.”
While discussing the reaction to Rep. Steve King's (R-IA) recent comments “questioning why white supremacy is considered offensive,” Sanford tried to claim there is “selective outrage” in politics because Waters didn't face a similar backlash for suggesting people “go after the kids of cabinet members.” But Waters never said that; rather, she encouraged people to confront Trump administration officials in public over the family separations.
From the January 15 edition of CNN's New Day with Alisyn Camerota and John Berman:
MARK SANFORD (FORMER REPRESENTATIVE, R-SC): What's happening here goes well beyond Steve King. I mean, what it represents is the further devolution of political debate in this country. I think that, you know -- Tim Scott, senator from here in South Carolina, I think was eloquent in his condemnation of Steve's remarks. But the bigger question is what [Sen. Mitt] Romney [(R-UT)] raised. Romney says his comments aren't appropriate for polite company. Are you kidding me? I mean, what's interesting about that is where is the outrage when Donald Trump says crazy things or racist things? Where is the outrage when Maxine Waters goes and says, let's go after the kids of cabinet members. Where is the outrage when, you know, a recently elected senator from Mississippi says put me on the front row of the lynching mob. I mean, what you can't have in politics is selective outrage -- where we say we are outraged at this but we're going to turn a blind eye to all this other.
ALISYN CAMEROTA (CO-HOST): You know, in fairness, you were in Congress when Steve King said some of these other offensive things. Did you speak out against him?
SANFORD: I -- I did not. I mean, as I just said, there are a lot of crazy things get said in Congress. I mean, you didn't speak out against him either. I mean, I think there were a lot of us --
CAMEROTA: We did. Actually -- actually -- I'm not trying to have some sort of moral high ground, but we did have Steve King on this show many times and he said some, you know, really offensive things on our show and we would talk about it. So he was a known offender.
SANFORD: No no, I didn't -- I didn't say the show or CNN. But I said did you personally.
CAMEROTA: On the show, in my role here, yes. We talked about it a lot. But I guess I take your point, that it's being selective with everybody.
SANFORD: My only point is there is a lot of stuff going on. And so again, for whatever reason, this is a tripping wire. But I would simply make the point you're making as well. We're making the same point, which is I think we've all got to be on guard for racist or other comments across the board and be consistent in that. I guess that's my only point. I would concur with you. Maybe I should have spoken out. But again, you don't catch every word that's said on the floor of the Congress or everything that everybody says back home in a congressional district. So I don't think it is a commentary as much on how anyone may have missed past comments. I think it is appropriate that it's -- it's blown up as it has. But I think you can't just single out Steve King and say we've got to make the stand here when nobody is making the same comments, in many cases the same Republicans about Trump when he says equally offensive things.