On Thursday, Omarosa Manigault spoke at the National Action Network’s New York convention, where she faced an incredibly tough crowd as the conference was the largest gathering of African-American White House critics since Donald Trump was elected president.
One of Omarosa’s sharpest critic in the room was CNN political commentator and former Congressional Black Caucus executive director, Angela Rye.
“I’m going to bring the fire right now. Moments ago, we were joined by your president’s apprentice,” Rye said, referring to President Trump’s White House communications director. “The truth is, when you tell somebody you’re going to fight for them, I’m going to tell you how not to fight for them. You don’t fight for them by putting forth a tax reform plan that cuts corporate tax rates but ignores the poor. You don’t fight for them by cutting taxes for the rich, and ensuring that burden is going to be on the backs of the poor and ordinary black and brown people.”
— Terry King Jr (@The18thKing) April 27, 2017
Omarosa spoke at the women’s power luncheon, which featured MC Lyte, Sheraton Times Square, citing the administration’s commitment to historically black colleges and universities as well as its Small Business Administration. Her comments did not sit well with her audience, though, as she defended a president who has long been criticized for his views and actions regarding women and minorities.
But Omarosa didn’t back down from the fight. When she was met with groans for bringing up Trump’s first 100 days, she replied, “Oh, I’m ready. I know what I came into, and I’m not scared.”
She added that she would “fight for you in the White House.”
“I am looking forward to partnering with you, continuing to work on behalf of the National Action Network in Los Angeles but more importantly, the President of the United States,” she said as the audience groaned some more.
But Rye’s comments, by contrast, highlighted a different interpretation of Trump’s politics. She recalled Trump demanding the death penalty of the Central Park Five, five African-American men accused of the rape and murder of a white woman in 1989. Though the men were later acquitted after DNA evidence proved their innocence.
Rye also pointed out that Trump and his father were at the center of of several civil rights lawsuits, alleging that they discriminated against black tenants; and scoffed at false claim that former President Barack Obama was not born in the U.S. Trump would later retract his wild claims.
“How you don’t fight for us is by pissing on me and telling me its raining! That’s not how you fight for me,” Rye roared as the audience rose to their feet in applause.
At the end of the awards luncheon, NAN founder and president Reverend Al Sharpton asked Omarosa to speak highly of the event to her boss in the Oval Office.
“I want you to bring a message back that you were respected here at the National Action Network because that’s how we behave,” Sharpton said. “We’ve had Bill O’Reilly here, we’ve had Sean Hannity here. We respect you. But I wish the President would respect us,” he said.
“He [Trump] and I have known each other for 30 years. Both of us are outer-borough New Yorkers. He comes from Queens where they don’t mind mixing it up and I come from Brooklyn where we kick butt and take names.”