'Legendary Journalist' Cokie Roberts: Trump Backers ‘Morally Tainted'

During a guest appearance on Tuesday's edition of MSNBC's Morning Joe program, Cokie Roberts -- a political commentator for National Public Radio and ABC News -- hammered people who still support Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump as “morally tainted” and an example of “textbook racism.”

Roberts said of the approximately 40 percent of American voters who polls say still support Trump: “I mean, there’s just no question about that. You can’t say ‘He’s a racist and what he says is textbook racism, but I support him because he’s the nominee of my party.’”

In an article posted Wednesday on the Huffington Post website, General Assignment Reporter Ron Dicker began his article by referring to Roberts as “a legendary journalist.”

Co-host and former GOP Congressman Joe Scarborough began the segment by stating: “There are a lot of Republicans exposed right now saying '[Trump] is a con man,' but they're supporting him. 'He's a racist,' but they're supporting him.”

If he exits the stage, what is the lasting impact on the (GOP House Speaker) Paul Ryans and the (Florida Senator) Marco Rubios and the (former New York City Mayor) Rudy Giulianis and the entire Republican Party?”

“They’re morally tainted,” Roberts stated firmly. “I mean, there’s just no question about that. You can’t say ‘He’s a racist and what he says is textbook racism, but I support him because he’s the nominee of my party.’”

Scarborough also asked:

Obviously, you grew up in politics around your mom and dad (who were elected to Congress as Democrats in Louisiana).

Have you ever seen anything like this, where you have a candidate so morally tainted … so challenged that people are calling him a “racist” and they're calling him a "con man" at the same time they're saying “We embrace him​?”

“Nobody’s ever seen anything like this,” Roberts responded.

“Not only did I grow up in politics, I grew up in the Jim Crow South,” she noted. “And we spent the last 50 years trying to bring people together instead of push people apart. And so that becomes a terrible stain on the country.”

“Roberts has been a fierce critic of Trump,” Decker noted. “In March, NPR had to clarify her commentator role after she co-wrote a column asking 'the rational wing' of the Republican Party to stop his march to the presidential nomination.”

“It looks like she’s not letting up,” the reporter stated.

Dicker also noted: “Of course, conservative groups took umbrage” at the remarks made by the “legendary journalist.”

One of the first responses came from Cal Thomas, a conservative columnist who criticized Roberts for hammering Donald Trump “while making no mention of possible ethical dilemmas facing backers of Hillary Clinton.”

He stated:

Clinton was the subject of a yearlong federal inquiry that led FBI Director James Comey to call her “extremely careless” and “reckless” in her handling of sensitive emails, and to say she was not truthful in public claims about her actions.

In addition, Clinton is now reportedly the subject of an investigation by multiple U.S. Attorneys looking at ties between her work as secretary of state and her family’s foundation.

Thomas also referred to the February article co-written by Roberts and her husband, Steve, in which they claimed that Trump “is one of the least qualified candidates ever to make a serious run for the presidency.”

The couple wrote: "If he is nominated by a major party -- let alone elected -- the reputation of the United States would suffer a devastating blow around the world."

Meanwhile, Roberts also weighed in on Hillary Clinton during April of 2015, telling ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos -- a former Clinton staffer -- that any anti-Hillary sentiment was due to sexism.

Also coming down hard on Roberts' Morning Joe comments was Aaron Bandler of The Daily Wire site, who called them “a typical display of leftist hypocrisy."

“Scarborough then echoed Roberts' 'morally tainted' line -- which apparently means that Scarborough is 'morally tainted' for promoting Trump during the primaries,” Bandler noted.

“Roberts' double-standard is stunning,” he stated. “While it can be argued that some Trump supporters are 'morally tainted,' Roberts has been an apologist for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton.”

“She has said that the perception of Clinton as 'inauthentic' is a misconception" and has raved that Clinton "knows everything about every issue,” Bandler indicated.

“Is Roberts 'morally tainted' for supporting 'an unindicted felon' who was interrogated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation over her use of emails on a private computer?” he asked, “as well as 'blood on her hands' after she let four Americans die at Benghazi and blamed it on a video?”

Most people already know the answers to these questions, so here's hoping the rest figure them out before November 8, Election Day.

Randy Hall
Randy Hall