Friday’s broadcast of The View went completely off the rails when a Black GOP congressional candidate brought up host Joy Behar’s infamous blackface photo, causing Behar to loudly deny she ever donned blackface as the panel devolved into a shoutfest.
Kim Klacik, who has become a conservative cause célèbre over her longshot bid to flip Baltimore’s congressional district to Republican, appeared on the ABC talk show to promote her campaign. And for the most part, things remained largely civil as she fielded questions during the multi-segment interview.
Towards the end of the conversation, however, things grew a bit more tense when co-host Sara Haines asked Klacik about President Donald Trump’s admission to journalist Bob Woodward that he purposely downplayed the threat of coronavirus during the early days of the crisis.
“We see how the virus has disproportionately affected the African-American community,” Haines noted. “Do you think continually downplaying the threat cost lives?”
Klacik, meanwhile, avoided directly criticizing the president while swinging it back to her congressional run.
“Now you say it disproportionately affecting black lives, if you look at Baltimore, you have things like a food desert,” she said. “They don’t have grocery stores. They don’t have what they need around them in their neighborhoods, and so yeah. I believe a coronavirus pandemic would affect us more. Look at my campaign ad. Look at the living conditions. That would affect us more, absolutely. That’s why I’m running for office.”
Behar immediately interjected, loudly confronting the candidate for avoiding Haines’ question on Trump’s handling of the pandemic.
“Come on, Kim. Excuse me,” the liberal co-host exclaimed. “I have to say something to you. He told Bob Woodward that it was a very serious issue, and it’s airborne and that it was terrible, and then he went out and told the American people, don’t wear masks. It’s all going to go away. You have to put some blame onus on your president. I’m sorry!”
And then, Klacik snarked: “Is this Joy speaking?” She continued: “The same Joy that paraded around in blackface not too long ago?”
Behar blew up, insisting that “the Black community had my back” and that “they know that that was not blackface,” adding that the picture in question was “an homage.”
During a 2016 episode of The View, Behar showed an old Halloween photo of herself dressed as “a beautiful African woman,” adding that she wore makeup “that was a little bit darker than my skin.” Amid a series of blackface controversies last year, Behar received renewed backlash over the picture, especially from conservatives who’ve accused her of hypocrisy.
After Klacik shot back that the “Black community has my back as well,” co-host Sunny Hostin jumped into the fray. Earlier in the interview, Hostin had noted that Klacik didn’t even live in the congressional district she’s running to represent.
“The Black community has your back?!” Hostin incredulously exclaimed. “The black community did not vote for you. The black community did not vote for you! What planet are you living on?!”
Klacik, who lost the April 28 special general election to finish out the late Rep. Elijah Cummings’ term, blamed her 49-point loss on the pandemic because “we were still locked down,” prompting Hostin to twirl in her chair while shouting, “Wow!”
Eventually, the entire six-person panel began yelling over each other, prompting Behar to finally end the segment and thank Klacik for coming on.
“That was very immature, but thank you for having me,” Klacik responded.