There were fireworks on “The View,” and not just because it was celebrating 5,000 shows.
The show welcomed controversial guests Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle to the Hot Topics table, and the panel didn’t shy away from asking the pair a wide-range of questions.
Topics ranged from Trump Jr.’s decision to reveal the identity of an anonymous whistleblower in a tweet to accusations that he’s benefitted from nepotism, but it was a question about character that let to what was arguably the most explosive portion of the interview.
Meghan McCain — who told Yahoo Entertainment ahead of the broadcast that she believed Trump Jr. would dictate the tone of the interview — told Trump Jr., “a lot of Americans in politics miss ‘character.’ And a lot of people miss the soul of this country. You and your family have hurt a lot of people and put a lot of people through a lot of pain.” She then asked, “Does all of this make you feel good?”
Trump Jr. defended his father, saying in part, “I understand that he’s controversial. I understand that he’s offended a lot of people, but I also understand he took on the establishment and that’s the premier sin in American politics these days to do that. I’m not happy that people interpret it that way. I don’t think that’s our intention.”
Co-host Joy Behar defended McCain’s questioning of President Trump’s character. “She’s talking about lowering the discourse to his level, which is horrible for this country. Even if people are working, we don’t want to have a country like that. Do you understand that?” she asked.
Trump Jr. fired back at Behar, “We’ve all done things that we regret. If we’re talking about bringing the discourse down — Joy, you’ve worn blackface.” Behar replied, “No, I have not!”
Behar had previously come under fire for her admission that she once dressed as a “beautiful African woman” at a Halloween party.
Moderator Whoopi Goldberg leapt to Behar’s defense. “She was not in blackface. Being black, I recognize blackface — this I can say. I know it when I see it.”
During the live show’s commercial break, Trump Jr. tweeted a clip of the episode where Behar shows a photo of her in costume.
With the panel engaged in a confusing cacophony of cross-talk and further allegations of character questioning, Goldberg took charge of the conversation by ringing a bell on the table. “Hold up! Hold up! Hold up!” she shouted before taking the show to a scheduled break.