CNN's John King is getting pilloried online over a two word description he made against Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), and three other progressive members of Congress.
King was responding to the news that Ocasio-Cortez was reportedly going to endorse the presidential campaign for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) when he made the comments.
"It's an extension of what we see tonight, a debate about not only who is going to lead the party, but where is the party going to go," said King.
"They are more of the younger, fresher faced, more aggressive, more liberal, less compromising, less talking about working with Republicans," he added.
Reps. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) and Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) are also said to be endorsing Sanders. The two with Ocasio-Cortez were a part of what has been dubbed the "squad" of far left progressive minority female members of Congress challenging the Democratic establishment.
"But it will also, I think," continued King, "have some of the other candidates saying, 'wait a minute, is it too far left, is it too uncompromising, too urban, is it too internet, does the Democratic party need to find a broader audience?' It is going to stoke the very debate we saw play out on the stage tonight."
A video of the comment was posted by Andrew Lawrence of the far left progressive news outlet "Media Matters."
CNN's John King just asked if @AOC, @Ilhan, and @RashidaTlaib's reported upcoming endorsement of Bernie is "too urb… https://t.co/ZYCIvLoZU4— Andrew Lawrence (@Andrew Lawrence)1571196514.0
Progressives and others said that the question was racist and complained on social media that it showed a bias against the campaign of Sanders.
"CNN, you are like watching the stages of death and dying. First one is denial," said labor activist RoseAnn DeMoro.
"John King using racist language like 'too urban' isn't surprising. His entire show is about treating kids in cages, Kurdish genocide and every other thing as 'plays' called in a game rather than human rights abuses. His career is based on eliminating humanity from reporting," said John Stanton.
"John King asks if The #TheSquad endorsing Bernie is "too urban", urban has been code for POC, ghetto and everything else they call us as if it's bad," tweeted comedian Aida Rodriguez.
"Still trying to wrap my mind around what 'too urban' means. When matched up w/ 'too young' & 'too internet' (which he also said) it comes off as part racist, part effete snobbery, w/ a dose of out of touch. Is he saying that votes of young women of color aren't necessary?" tweeted pollster James Zogby.
"'Too urban' is the business casual cousin of 'send them back,'" remarked writer Michael Arcenaux.
Sanders has been recently overtaken in the presidential nomination race by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).