Last week, Debra Messing called for a list to be published showing all the attendees of a Sept. 17 Beverly Hills Trump re-election fundraiser that the president will be attending. Now the Will & Grace star is in hot water—with the president, but also with some of his critics. On Thursday, Trump lashed out at Messing, tweeting, "Bad 'actress' Debra The Mess Messing is in hot water. She wants to create a 'Blacklist' of Trump supporters, & is being accused of McCarthyism. Is also being accused of being a Racist because of the terrible things she said about blacks and mental illness. If Roseanne Barr.... ....said what she did, even being on a much higher rated show, she would have been thrown off television. Will Fake News NBC allow a McCarthy style Racist to continue? ABC fired Roseanne. Watch the double standard!" More on the controversy, which also includes Eric McCormack:
- As the Hill points out, it was the second time Trump tweeted about Messing since the controversy started; after she initially called for the list Saturday, he tweeted Sunday, "I have not forgotten that when it was announced that I was going to do The Apprentice, and when it then became a big hit, helping NBC’s failed lineup greatly, @DebraMessing came up to me at an Upfront & profusely thanked me, even calling me 'Sir.' How times have changed!" People notes Messing responded to that by asking Trump to take action on gun violence, "now that I have your attention."
- As for the accusations of racism, Trump was referring to a separate incident this week in which Messing promoted a tweet showing an Alabama church with a sign reading: "a black vote for Trump is mental illness." Black comedian Terrence K. Williams (who the Washington Post notes is a Trump supporter) on Wednesday called her out for it and started the hashtag #RacistDebraMessing. She responded, "I apologized for liking that church sign. I said I regret it. I shud have thought before recklessly suppprting." (More from her thread explaining her thoughts here.) Deadline notes Williams' hashtag was trending on Twitter.
- Back to the accusations of McCarthyism: Trump isn't the only one upset that Messing (and McCormack, her Will & Grace co-star who similarly tweeted, "Hey, @THR, kindly report on everyone attending this event, so the rest of us can be clear about who we don’t wanna work with. Thx.") asked for a list of Trump fundraiser attendees. Speaking about the issue Tuesday on The View, Whoopi Goldberg said, "Listen, the last time people did this, people ended up killing themselves," referring to Joseph McCarthy's blacklisting of supposed Communists in the 1950s, per the Daily Beast.
- View co-host Meghan McCain agreed. And, per Fox News, she also tweeted a response to McCormack's attempt to clarify his tweet, in which he said he doesn't support blacklists but wants "to understand where Trump's major donations are coming from, which is a matter of public record." Said McCain: "No one is misinterpreting - you want to put a list together of Trump supporters/republicans in Hollywood and end their employment, publicly shame them, possibly invited god knows what into their lives. THIS is the 'tolerant Hollywood left' and no amount of backtracking changes it."
- Conservative comedian Michael Loftus echoed McCain's sentiments, per Fox News. "There's no way Eric McCormack was misquoted. He said exactly what he thought: 'Gimme a list of the people going so I know who I don't want to work with.' And Debra Messing was right there to back him up," he said, adding that he believes they're only backing down now because of Whoopi calling them out.
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