MSNBC contributor Jason Johnson argued Monday that President Donald Trump insulting Rep. Maxine Waters (D., Calif.) shows he is close to using racial slurs.
Trump called Waters "a low-IQ individual" at a rally in Pennsylvania Saturday, and Johnson considered this an openly racist comment. When host Chris Matthews said the crowd may have been too ignorant to even know who Waters is, Johnson said the rallygoers knew whom Trump was targeting.
"I have more respect for the people at this rally, Chris. They know who Maxine Waters is, they know who she represents, they know who Nancy Pelosi is," Johnson said. "He's half a rally away from just using the ‘N' word. It's that basic."
Johnson, a political commentator and professor at Morgan State University in Baltimore, repeated the charge and said people would feign surprise if Trump did use the racial slur.
"He is half a rally away from calling somebody the ‘N' word and everyone is going to pretend that they're shocked and everybody on ‘The Apprentice' is going to say he used it all the time," Johnson said. "That's what he does. He has a hostility and anger towards women of color."
Matthews pushed back at Johnson’s point again, saying Trump has had success in diverse environments such as New York City, but Johnson insisted that Trump is racially prejudiced.
"He doesn't have to be around people of color unless he wants to," Johnson said. "His relationship with black women is similar to his relationship with women in general. If black women aren’t working for him and they aren't there to serve him in some personal way, he's basically Calvin Candie."
Calvin Candie is a plantation owner who tortures slaves in the movie Django Unchained.
Johnson went on to say Trump only values black women who serve him, such as former aide Omarosa Manigault Newman and media personalities Lynnette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, known as Diamond and Silk.
"That's basically Trump," Johnson said, referring to Candie. "If she's not Diamond and Silk, if she's not Omarosa, ‘I can’t believe this black woman is talking to me.’"