During his Monday appearance on The View, GOP presidential hopeful Tim Scott blasted the hosts’ recent “dangerous” and “offensive” comments about Black Republicans like himself.
The impact of his forceful rebuttal, however, was somewhat blunted by the fact that co-host Joy Behar—who claimed last month that Scott doesn’t “get” systemic racism, wasn’t actually on the broadcast. The longtime View host is generally off on Mondays.
Last month, Behar sparked outrage—especially from conservatives—when she compared Scott to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas while dismissing their views on racism.
“He’s one of these guys who, you know, he’s like Clarence Thomas,” she said at the time. “Black Republican who believes in pulling yourself by your bootstraps, rather than, to me, understanding the systemic racism that African Americans face in this country—and other minorities. He doesn’t get it. Neither does Clarence. And that’s why they’re Republicans.”
During that same broadcast, co-host Sunny Hostin added that Scott “seems to think because I made it, everyone can make it, ignoring again the fact that he is the exception and not the rule.” Whoopi Goldberg, meanwhile, argued that the South Carolina senator was using a “dog whistle” of victimhood and suffered from “Clarence Thomas Syndrome.”
Ahead of his scheduled appearance on The View, Scott lashed out at the hosts. “I think it’s time for a conservative with a backbone to look those ladies in the eyes and say you do not have to be an exception to succeed in America,” he exclaimed at a campaign event last week.
It didn’t take long for the fireworks to start during Monday’s interview, which spanned half of the hourlong talk show. Referencing Scott’s own impoverished upbringing, Hostin—who is Black and Latina—noted that she was also raised in the “projects amidst a lot of poverty and violence.”
After pointing out that Scott was the first Black senator elected from the South since Reconstruction, Hostin wondered why the lawmaker claims his life story “disproves leftist lies” when it appears he is the “exception,” by definition.
“And my question to you is, I’m the exception, right? You’re the exception. Maybe even Miss Whoopi Goldberg is the exception. But we are not the rule,” she continued, adding, “At nearly every turn, these achievements were fought, threatened, and erased, most often by white violence. You have indicated that you don’t believe in systemic racism. What is your definition of systemic racism?”
With Hostin wondering if he even believes systemic racism exists, Scott fired back that the host’s question itself was reckless.
“One of the things I think about and one of the reasons why I’m on the show is because of the comments that were made, frankly, on this show, that the only way for a young African-American kid to be successful in this country is to be the exception and not the rule,” the presidential candidate stated. “That is a dangerous, offensive, disgusting message to send to our young people today that the only way to succeed is by being the exception.”
The two went back and forth over whether or not he actually was an exception, with Scott arguing that the nation has already experienced an African-American president and vice-president, along with two Black secretaries of state. When Hostin pushed back by referencing the high rate of Black homelessness, Scott reminded the host that “you like people to be deferential and respectful” before asking her to allow him to finish answering her question.
Elsewhere in the lengthy interview, Goldberg once again chastised the live in-studio audience for booing their guest, echoing a similar moment last month when she scolded the crowd for jeering Gov. Chris Sununu (R-NH) over his pro-gun stance.
“No, no, no,” she exclaimed after several audience members groaned over Scott's suggestion that Disney is “radical left” and “indoctrinating” young children.
“I’m sorry, sir,” Goldberg continued. “Do not boo. This is The View. We accept—we don’t have to believe everything people say, but you cannot boo people here, please. You cannot do it.”
Yet, while Scott believed that Disney had become “woke” and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis “started off on the right foot” by making the entertainment behemoth a centerpiece of the right’s culture wars, he disagreed with DeSantis “weaponizing” his state’s government against the company.
I think the fact of the matter is that the First Amendment—every single person should exercise their First Amendment rights,” he concluded. “If they don’t like what’s happening with a corporation, stop shopping there.”