Democratic Strategist Hilary Rosen Apologizes to Sanders Spokesperson Nina Turner After CNN Scuffle

Rosen apologized for saying Turner, a black woman, didn’t have “standing” to invoke MLK Jr. in an argument about Biden’s record on race

Last Updated: March 6, 2020 @ 8:31 AM

Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen apologized Friday morning after receiving backlash for a Thursday CNN segment where she told Nina Turner, a black woman, that she was misusing a quote from Martin Luther King Jr.

“On air thurs I said my colleague @ninaturner didn’t have standing to use MLK Jr. That was wrong. I am sorry for saying those words. Pls no need to defend me and attack angry black women. They have standing. I always need to listen more than I talk. We rise together,” Rosen tweeted, referencing the exchange with the Bernie Sanders campaign’s co-chair on “Cuomo Prime Time.”

A second Rosen tweet said, “Good morning. I have nothing but the upmost respect for Nina, her experience as a person of color, and the fight she’s waging in this election. Wake up this morning to this: I apologized + I take full responsibility. I look forward to the rest of the primary seeking common ground.”

Replying to a third, now-deleted tweet in which Rosen apologized for talking “over” her, Turner said, “You know Hilary, you didn’t just talk over me. Go back & watch the segment. You said among other things that I did not have standing.”

The entire argument — and subsequent series of apology tweets — came about after Turner used quotes from King to explain Sanders’ Democratic Socialist positioning, saying it is “in the tradition of President FDR” and “the spirit of the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr.”

Turner spoke of King’s warnings to the black community of “white moderates,” which Rosen took issue with, claiming, “That’s actually not what Dr. King said.”

Rosen went on to say King really warned communities of color about the silence of white moderates, then pivoted that into praise of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

They started to argue, and Rosen said, “You know what? Don’t use Martin Luther King against Joe Biden. You don’t have that standing. I’m sorry. You don’t!”

From there, Turner replied, “Don’t tell me what kind of standing I have as a black woman in America! How dare you?”

Watch the exchange below:

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