Before rapper Kanye West’s visit to see President Donald Trump at the White House on Thursday, he was already making waves.
In a segment about the then-upcoming meeting on Atlanta-based CNN earlier this week, panelists Tara Setmayer and Bakari Sellers talked about their disapproval of West. In response, former University of Georgia star and Trump supporter Herschel Walker tweeted: “Woke up wondering why @CNN doesn’t take all three off the air?”
During the segment, Bakari Sellers said “Kanye West is what happens when Negroes don’t read.” (Setmayer explained that was a Chris Rock reference from the 90s; Sellers later pointed out in a tweet that West “admittedly chooses not to” read.)
Setmayer went on to call West “the token negro of the Trump administration.” At times during the show, Don Lemon laughed.
Walker’s tweet said he “went to bed appalled over” Lemon’s “despicable behavior laughing” at the commentators’ “awful remarks.”
Setmayer’s Twitter response began with three loaded words: “Bless your heart.”
“I’m an actual conservative, who’s worked on policy advancing those principles for 20+yrs,” she wrote. “I’ll never be a shill for Trump.”
Trump and Walker have been friends for decades, dating back to when Trump purchased the UGA star’s first pro team, the New Jersey Generals. The legendary running back has also appeared on Trump’s reality TV show, the “Celebrity Apprentice." Earlier this year, Trump tapped Walker for a two-year post on a presidential sports council.
West’s Thursday meeting at the White House was organized so he could watch Trump sign the Music Modernization Act. During the meeting, West praised Trump, said his red “Make America Great Again” baseball cap made him feel like “Superman,” dropped an f-bomb, discussed his mental health and floated the possibility of running for president.