Sunday on MSNBC’s PoliticsNation on with race hustler Rev. Al Sharpton, Democrat Rep. Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts fired back at GOP presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy after he referred to her and social justice author Ibram Kendi as “modern grand wizards” of the “modern KKK.”
“The verbal assault lobbied against myself and Dr. Kendi is shameful. It is deeply offensive, and it is dangerous,” Pressley said, adding that she is “squarely focused on the work of undoing the centuries of harm that has precisely been done to Black Americans and charting a path of true restorative justice and racial justice forward.”
“It is not that long ago that we were besieged by images of White supremacists carrying tiki torches in Charlottesville. It was not that long ago that a White supremacist mob seized the Capitol, waving Confederate flags and erecting nooses on the West Lawn of the Capitol,” she said.
Fact check: a white supremacist mob did not seize the Capitol.
“I stand by what I said to provoke an open and honest discussion in this country,” Ramaswamy told CNN host Dana Bash on Sunday. “And there are many Americans today who are deeply frustrated by the new culture of anti-racism, how it’s really racism in new clothing.”
Ramaswamy said racism “comes from the modern left” and that it is part of “a dogma in this country.”
The original comments were made during Friday’s campaign appearance in Iowa, where Ramaswamy responded to a voter’s question about whether he has experienced racism in recent years.
“She’s a member of the ‘Squad,’” Ramaswamy said of Pressley on Friday. “Her words, not mine: ‘We don’t want any more Black faces that don’t want to be a Black voice. We don’t want any more Brown faces that don’t want to be a Brown voice.'”
“These aren’t my words,” Ramaswamy said. “These are the words of the modern grand wizards of the modern KKK.”