CNN’s Don Lemon wasn’t buying Sen. David Perdue’s (R-GA) excuse for flippantly botching the first name of Democratic vice presidential candidate Kamala Harris, and so he created a remedial for the struggling GOP politician to help him out.
During a warm-up speech at a Trump campaign rally in Georgia on Friday afternoon, Perdue had mispronounced and then obviously mocked Harris’ first name, as the crowd laughed and cheered. Of note: Perdue and Harris have both been in the Senate since 2016 and serve together on the 19-member Senate Budget Committee. Perdue’s sing-songy “Kamala-mala-mala, I don’t know, whatever” insult evoked an infamous moment from the 2006 Virginia senate race, where then-Senator George Allen (R) had singled out an Asian man filming him and called him “macaca, or whatever his name is,” a vestige of an old racist insult comparing black men to monkeys.
“Listen closely,” Lemon said. “Following the president’s lead, woefully mispronouncing the name of his colleague who happens to be on the Senate Budget Committee with him. That is Senator Kamala Harris.”
Lemon then played the Perdue clip three times in a row.
“You just heard what I heard and saw what I saw, right? You did,” Lemon noted, before giving the senator’s official response. “So keep that in mind as I now tell you what Senator Purdue’s office tells us tonight. They claim that he simply mispronounced her name, didn’t mean anything by it. You heard him. He said her name four different ways and then tacked on a ‘mala-mala-mala I don’t know whatever.””
The CNN host dismissed that explanation, saying Perdue was clearly trying to be “disrespectful” and “funny, scoring cheap laughs.”
“Their statement insults your intelligence,” Lemon added. “Even though Senator Purdue’s office has clearly given us a bad faith explanation, I’m going to help a brother out here. Okay?”
Lemon then ran through a step-by-step guide punctuation, showing question marks, exclamation pointes, and, finally, a comma.
“So what is this now next to the question mark and exclamation mark? That is a comma,” Lemons patiently explained. “Comma plus -la is comma-la. A simple punctuation mark. A comma and then a la. So easy. There. I fixed it for you, Senator.”
Watch the video above, via CNN.
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