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MSNBC host Chris Matthews mistook Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., for Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison on Friday, chalking it up to “mistaken identity.”
Harrison was appearing on “Hardball” to discuss his campaign to unseat Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., but the interview went off the rails when Matthews ran a clip of Scott standing beside Graham at that evening’s Trump rally in North Charleston and assumed it was Harrison.
Both Scott and Harrison are African-American.
“Jaime, I see you standing next to the guy you’re going to beat right there, maybe,” he said. “Maybe? Maybe, maybe? Lindsey Graham?”
Democratic strategist Adrienne Elrod and network correspondent Trymaine Lee both chimed in to alert Matthews that he’d made a mistake, but it took several seconds for him to realize the mixup.
“Who’s that?” Matthews eventually replied. “I’m sorry, oh! The other senator, Tim Scott. What am I saying? Big mistake. Mistaken identity, sir. Sorry. Tell me how you’re going to beat Lindsey. Because everybody knows Lindsey.”
Harrison appeared to roll his eyes and looked shocked, but kept a smile on his face and answered Matthews’ question.
“Everybody knows Lindsey, but everybody doesn’t like Lindsey Graham,” he replied. “And that’s how I’m going to beat him, Chris.
“This is a guy that you can’t trust,” added Harrison, the former chair of the South Carolina Democratic Party. “This is a guy that doesn’t have a moral compass. And all he’s focused on is Washington, D.C. games. And at the end of the day, the folks in South Carolina are going to give Lindsey Graham a one-way ticket, maybe not back here to South Carolina, but possibly to Mar-a-Lago. We’re fed up.”