As the Left continues to mourn the transformation of actor Jussie Smollett from victim to suspect, some have engaged in a little “whataboutism” as a means to complaning that the system is unfair. They have pointed out that while Donald Trump tweeted an almost immediate reaction to news of Smollett’s arrest, he was much slower to respond to the arrest of Coast Guard Lt. Christopher Paul Hasson, a self-identified white nationalist who had compiled a hit list, chiefly Democratic lawmakers and liberal journalists.
One of the individuals to make a federal case out of this seeming inequity — Michael Steele — is not only not a Democrat but was once the chairman of the Republican National Committee. Steele participated in a panel on MSNBC in which he surmised that Trump was “probably not happy” that the FBI stopped stopped Hasson from acting on his murderous intent. But he didn’t stop there. Steele, who has been one of the president’s fiercest critics, went on to add:
Why would we be surprised that a that a self-proclaimed nationalist would not speak out against a self-proclaimed white nationalist? Why are we acting like this is a space Donald Trump is going to go in on behalf of the American ideal? No, he’s not. And these are his people, all right? And he’s not going to stop them and thank law enforcement. He’s probably not happy about what law enforcement did. [Emphasis added]
White supremacists are Trump’s “people”? That’s kind of a big stretch. So much so that his fellow MSNBC contributors saw fit to challenge him, asking what he thought Trump might have done had Hasson actually carried out the attack. Steele’s response:
Well, that’s the next test in all of this. That’s a very good question and absolutely the next test. Honestly, we would hope there would be the appropriate level of outrage and pushback.
It’s one thing for Trump haters to call him out for not responding the way they thought he should to the white nationalists who marched on Charlottesville in 2017. It’s another thing entirely to accuse him of being indifferent to white nationalism or, worse yet, of promoting it.
Steele should be ashamed.