Dem says party made ‘mistake’ with pick for Trump rebuttal

Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) is criticizing the Democratic rebuttal speech to President Trump’s first address to a joint session of Congress, calling it “a mistake” to have chosen former Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear.

“You’re asking about thinking, and that didn’t happen,” Cleaver said Wednesday when questioned on MSNBC about the diner-set rebuttal speech. 

“Look, the governor did a fabulous job in terms of healthcare when he was in Kentucky … but I would love to have had [Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julián] Castro as giving the response or somebody like [Rep.] Cedric Richmond from New Orleans,” Cleaver said.


Beshear lauded the success of ObamaCare in his state during his opposition-party rebuttal. He also faulted Trump for antagonizing Democrats and vilifying the press.

While Cleaver acknowledged the former governor’s experience in Kentucky, he noted that he would have preferred to see a younger or more diverse Democratic voice.

“I don’t mind when we make mistakes, and that was a mistake,” he said.

“I just left a meeting where we were discussing the fact that we think we are going to have a problem if we don’t start presenting an image of the millennials and that there is a youth movement in the Democratic Party,” Cleaver added.


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