Omarosa Manigault has created an uproar at the National Association of Black Journalists conference without even saying a word.
The invitation of the top Trump aide to participate in a panel was deemed “extremely offensive” by some attending the New Orleans event, the New York Post’s Page Six reported.
“The majority there don’t want her involved. It’s heavy drama — even the moderator is refusing. Everyone sees it as extremely offensive,” a source told the publication.
A panel on police brutality saw a change in lineup when the scheduled moderator, New York Times journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, pulled out and was replaced by Bounce TV’s Ed Gordon after Manigault, the communications director for the Office of Public Liaison for President Trump, was added.
The panel was to feature Valerie Castile, Sandra Sterling, and the New Yorker’s Jelani Cobb. Cobb was also pulled out of panel, but the reason “wasn’t simply the addition of Omarosa,” she told Page Six.
“It was that she was added at the eleventh hour and it was unclear whether we would be able to discuss substantive issues regarding the administration and its policing policies. Also, the panel was very disorganized, and basic things like format were not clear,” she said.
Manigualt, a staunch supporter of Trump and a former contestant on “The Apprentice” also served as the director of African-American outreach for Trump’s election campaign. Her outspoken manner and unwavering support for the president have earned her plenty of backlash from critics.
The annual conference event, billed as a “Convention and Career Fair,” is being held Aug. 9 – 13 at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside and the 2017 theme, according to the organization website, is “Power Up and Break Through.”
“We’ll explore the future of media, ongoing industry disruptions and newsroom best practices. We’ll prepare convention attendees for their own professional breakthrough moments and provide the skills to power up,” read the event description.
Senior managers, on-air coaches and correspondents from CNN were scheduled for a workshop Friday teaching how to land a job at the network.
April Ryan, a CNN commentator and American Urban Radio Networks bureau chief, got into a heated argument with the Trump aide earlier this year. Ryan claimed she was “physically intimidated” by Manigault in February just outside the Oval Office.
On a podcast with CNN colleague Angela Rye, Ryan alleged that the 43-year-old Manigault had tried to sabotage her career, Page Six reported.
“She was going around telling Sean Spicer not to call on me [during press conferences]. She’s calling other people, newsmakers, sources . . . trolling my Twitter . . . She wanted to kill my career,” Ryan said.
“When you try to kill me and my career because you want to advance yourself, because you are now making money after not making money from selling cellphones, and now you’re making $180,000 a year, good for you,” Ryan added. “But you know what? Karma comes back. And I told her, ‘The sad thing about it is: No one likes you.’ ”
Neither Manigault nor the National Association of Black Journalists had commented when asked by Page Six.