Steve Harvey Meets With Donald Trump Amid Major Backlash for Jokes About Asian Men

What a week. Steve Harvey met with President-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower on Friday, January 13, amid major backlash for jokes he made about Asian men on his show one week prior. Watch what he said about their meeting in the video above.

The 59-year-old talk show host seemed to be in good spirits after meeting with the 70-year-old real estate mogul, telling reporters that he was hoping to work with Dr. Ben Carson to “bring about some positive change in the inner cities.” Carson is currently going through Senate confirmation hearings over his possible role as Trump’s Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

“[Trump] wants to do something,” Harvey told Fox News. “And he realized he needs some allies in that department and he seemed really sincere about it.” Chicago and Detroit are among the cities that Harvey said the incoming administration hopes to “target.” 

President-elect Donald Trump and television personality Steve Harvey speak to reporters after their meeting at Trump Tower, January 13, 2017 in New York City.
President-elect Donald Trump and television personality Steve Harvey speak to reporters after their meeting at Trump Tower, January 13, 2017, in New York City. Albin Lohr-Jones/Pool via Bloomberg/Getty Images

“I wanna do things with all of the major inner cities to see if we can bring about some change and help some of these young people out,” he added, flashing a smile. According to Variety, Harvey also noted that the pair “laughed about my score in golf.”

Harvey previously endorsed Hillary Clinton, but told reporters that the former Apprentice host is “the most exciting candidate I have seen in years.” The talk show host even addressed his headline-making decision to mock Asian men on his show last week, telling reporters, “I ain’t been laughing that much the past few days. They’ve been beating me up on the internet.”

On Friday, January 6, Harvey kicked off his show with a segment highlighting weird (actual) self-help books, including How to Have Sex in the Woods and Knitting With Dog Hair. The comedian then mentioned one in particular, titled How to Date a White Woman: A Practical Guide for Asian Men.

Harvey could hardly contain his laughter as he described the book, imagining a faux-conversation between an Asian man and a white woman. “‘Excuse me, do you like Asian men?’” he imagined a mild-mannered Asian man asking. “‘No.’ ‘Okay, thank you.’”

The Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man author then drew the joke out with a proposed follow-up book: How to Date a Black Woman: A Practical Guide for Asian Men. “Same thing,” he said, still laughing. “‘You like Asian men? … ‘I don’t even like Chinese food. I don’t eat what I can’t pronounce.’”

Twitter users were quick to take Harvey to task for his racist remarks.

Harvey also came under fire on social media in December 2015 after he accidentally announced the wrong name at the Miss Universe competition, erroneously declaring Colombia’s Ariadna Gutierrez as the winner instead of the real winner, Miss Philippines Pia Wurtzbach.

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