Comedian, author and broadcaster Steve Harvey discussed in greater detail his meeting last week with president-elect Donald Trump and says that moving forward he may work with Ben Carson, Trump’s nominee to be Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, on inner city issues.
“When I walked away feeling there might be a real chance for some positive to come out of what many feel is doom and gloom,” he said on his radio show Monday morning.
Harvey and Trump’s meeting was set up by members of the incoming president’s transition team.
“When we met it was a very cordial meeting,” he said. “He was very warm, friendly and very sincere. We talked about golf, our favorite golf courses. We talked about the election.”
He said he was inspired by President Barack Obama’s farewell address.
“The only way we can heal the divide in this country is through conversation,” Harvey said. “When I listened to President Obama’s final speech in Chicago one of the things that stuck in my mind was when he told people to get out from behind our computers and get involved. I took that to mean, get from behind the microphone.”
After an initial exchange of pleasantries, Harvey said he and Trump started talking about initiatives to help inner-city communities. Trump got Carson on the phone to continue the conversation.
“Dr. Carson and I talked briefly about Chicago, his hometown of Detroit. I mentioned I was from Cleveland,” Harvey said.
He was dismayed at the backlash he experienced from some and hopes people understand his motivations in meeting with the president-elect.
“On a personal note, a lot of y’all hurt me,” Harvey said. “I didn’t expect the backlash to be so fierce. I also understand if I’m going to keep getting stabbed at, at least while you’re stabbing me, you should understand my intent. I’m from the hood. I’ve been putting in the work for years. I care about these inner cities because that’s where I’m from.”