House Oversight Committee chairman Elijah Cummings said he believes Michael Cohen’s testimony

House Oversight Committee chairman Elijah Cummings refereed tensions after a Democratic member and a Republican member began arguing about racism.

First, some background: In his questioning earlier today, GOP Rep. Mark Meadows introduced Lynne Patton, a high-ranking political official in the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In a stunning exchange, Meadows claimed Patton, who is black, doesn’t agree with Michael Cohen’s assessment that Trump is a racist, since she was hired to work for him.

Then Democratic Rep. Rashida Tlaib called him out. In her questioning, Tlaib said using a black woman as “a prop” is in itself racist.

“Just to make a note, Mr. Chairman, just because someone has a person of color, a black person, working for them, does not mean they aren’t racist and it is insensitive that some would even say it’s — the fact that someone would actually use a prop, a black woman, in this chamber, in this committee, is alone racist in itself,” she said.

Meadows jumped in and asked that Tlaib’s remarks be taken out of the record.

After some arguing, Cummings jumped in. He talked about his parents — who were “basically slaves” — and mentioned that he’s a close friend of Meadows.

“First of all, I want to thank the gentleman for what stated. If there’s anyone who is sensitive with regard to race, it’s me, son of former sharecroppers that were basically slaves, so I get it,” he said.

“I listen very carefully to Ms. Tlaib, and I think, and I don’t want to, I’m not going to put words in her mouth, but I think she said that she was not calling you a racist, and I thought that we could clarify that, because, Mr. Meadows, you know, of all the people on this committee, I’ve said it — and got in trouble for it — that you’re one of my best friends.”

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