Three days after CNN analyst April Ryan caught flak on Twitter for saying U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris used the race card on debate night, Ryan defended the presidential hopeful against President Donald Trump.
“Kamala Harris is a threat to this White House because she is a black woman,” Ryan said on CNN Monday. “This president has a problem with strong black women, or black women period. End of story.”
Ryan also praised Harris for her performance in a debate night spat with former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden over his work with segregationists.
“She had a clapback when she went after Joe Biden, and she definitely showed in this first round of debates that she could stand toe-to-toe with Donald Trump and give him what he gives her,” Ryan said. “So she is a threat to them in more ways than one.”
Ryan made the remarks after fending off social media backlash for bringing up Harris’ prosecutorial record and saying she “played the race card” during the Democratic debate.
“Stones are being thrown,” Ryan said on Twitter Friday. “As @KamalaHarris played the race card on @JoeBiden, it is coming back on her.”
The tweet prompted more than 1,990 retweets.
One Twitter user said on the social media site:
“If ANYONE had told me that one day, THEE April Ryan, would claim that another (Black woman) had ‘played the race card’ when telling a personal, verifiable anecdote on how another Candidate’s policy directly affected her, I would have been ready to FIGHT.”
Another Twitter user, Selena Adera, defended Harris by pointing to her work creating an anti-recidivism program, making public data on police shootings and instituting mandatory police bias training.
“As AG, she was ahead of her time,” Adera said.
But support for Harris has not been universal.
In the article Ryan shared, writer German Lopez said Harris’ record is filled with contradictions.
“She pushed for programs that helped people find jobs instead of putting them in prison, but also fought to keep people in prison even after they were proved innocent,” Lopez wrote. “She refused to pursue the death penalty against a man who killed a police officer, but also defended California’s death penalty system in court.”