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VA-Sen: Corey Stewart calls Al Sharpton 'race hustler,' Americans are 'sick and tired' of race talk

Virginia Senate candidate Corey Stewart told Al Sharpton that Americans are "sick and tired of talking about race all the time." (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Virginia Senate candidate Corey Stewart (R) called MSNBC's Al Sharpton  a "race hustler" and said that Americans are "sick and tired of talking about race all the time."

The controversial candidate who has fought against the demolition of Confederate monuments said during an interview with Sharpton on Sunday that he has daily conversations with people of all races and that they want to to know how to solve the problems around education, health care, and jobs.

"Why are you and the left so obsessed with what happened 150 years ago?" Stewart asked Sharpton.

"You've made a career out of dividing," Stewart swiped. "You've been a race hustler your entire career. You've made a lot of money at it and you haven't even bothered to pay your taxes at it."

But Sharpton repeatedly pushed Stewart to explain his past comments in defense of Civil War figures such as Gen. Robert E. Lee and Gen. Stonewall Jackson, "whose only place in history was defending slavery."

The 13-minute interview was a game of back-and-forth insults between the two men.

Stewart said he believes "it was wrong to be removing historical monuments that were placed there by prior generations," adding that families erected the statues to remember their sons who died in the war.

Sharpton came back at him claiming that race is "the only reason" Americans haven't been able to move "in certain ways" economically or in education.

"You can't eliminate race when that is the basis of it," Sharpton said.

But Stewart ignored Sharpton's plight regarding race.

"There are Americans of every single race, of every single religion, and every single ethnicity that are struggling with the same things," Stewart said.

The candidate who hopes to defeat Sen. Tim Kaine (D) in November said the fundamental problems facing Americans are health care, education, and illegal immigration.

"We have modern-day slavery going on in the United States today in the terms of sex trafficking and that's all because we have an open border," Stewart said.

Sharpton agreed sex trafficking is a problem but reverted back to the monuments and asked why the statues should be supported and how racism should be addressed.

"As far as I can tell, taking down a Confederate monument has never educated a single child, it's never provided health care insurance for a single person in this country, it's never built a road, it's never solved or created a single job," Stewart said.

"And that's why the left keeps doing these deliberately doing things like trying to divide Americans by race and as long as you all keep doing that we're never going to be able to address the problems."

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