Debra Messing lashed out at fellow actress Susan Sarandon on social media, criticising her for giving too much credit to President Donald Trump for the role he has played in politics.
The squabble erupted Wednesday from a Variety headline on Twitter, teasing an exclusive interview with Sarandon. It read: "Donald Trump has, if anything, inspired more women and people of colour to run for office, says actress Susan Sarandon." In fact, Sarandon said Trump has "unintentionally" energised politics.
"We're on the verge of having the governors of Florida, Georgia and Maryland be people of color and one woman," she said.
The 71-year-old actress called it a "revolution," telling Variety that "maybe things had to get so bad before real change actually could happen, so we just have to stay awake."
She also said that "the kids are on fire."
"I've never heard millennials or kids in high school saying, 'I can't wait to vote.' That's huge," she told Variety. "They're really doing a good job of signing up kids and that's what's going to make the change.
"I say: Take me down. Take over. Get rid of all these old people and get that young blood in there and they're going to make a difference. I'm very hopeful because of them."
Sarandon's remarks - and Messing's criticism of them - come at a time when Hollywood has taken a deep interest in politics. As The Washington Post's Michelle Ye Hee Lee reported, "Hollywood's fervour for this year's midterm elections rivals that of recent presidential campaigns, according to Democratic donors and strategists in the Los Angeles area who say the energy is driven by a belief that a Democratic-controlled House can serve as a powerful check on President Trump."
The Variety post about Sarandon's interview drew a heated response from Messing, who is best known for her role in "Will & Grace." The actress berated Sarandon online, telling her to "shut the f*** up" about Trump.
"STFU SUSAN. Oh yes, PLEASE let's give Trump CREDIT," Messing wrote in a series of tweets.
"I mean how else are you able to walk out on the street. Convince yourself that this CATASTROPHE of a President who you said was better that HRC IS NOT ripping children away from parents seeking asylum, holding children."
"INDEFINITELY in internment camps with their new policy, DESTROYING all attempts to protect our environment (yes the water you purported to care about), endangered animals, taking away women's ACCESS to health care and legal abortion, trying to block POC from Voting with extreme."
"Judges who will support jerrymandering efforts, not to mention destroying ALL good will and allied relationships across the Globe. Oh, and lest you forget Syria, Crimea, and putting PRO-RUSSIA agenda BEFORE the United States best interests. YES, do go on."
Messing continued on her rant, telling Sarandon, with a hint of sarcasm, to go ahead and "LAUD the effect Trump has had."
"Out of DESPERATION & PANIC for the DESTRUCTION of the Soul of our country," Messing tweeted some more. "But you don't want to look at THAT part of the equation. Because then you'd have to admit you were dead WRONG running around bellowing that HRC was more dangerous than Trump. Only a self righteous, narcissist would continue to spout off and not - in the face of Americans' pain and agony - be contrite and apologise for your part in this catastrophe."
Sarandon responded to the criticism, telling Messing to listen to her entire interview:
"Debs, before you get yourself all self-righteous try clicking on the video and listening to what I actually say, not @Variety's clickbait headline, which btw has no quotation marks. That's a clue ..."
It's not the first time the two have taken their political sparring to social media. As People reported, leading up to the 2016 presidential election, Messing and Sarandon got into it after Sarandon said on MSNBC that given the choice between Hillary Clinton and Trump, she did not know who she would vote for. Sarandon said that "Some people feel that Donald Trump will bring the revolution immediately - if he gets in, then things will really explode." Then a Twitter war ensued.
Ultimately, Sarandon, a New Yorker, says she voted for Jill Stein.
"I knew (Jill Stein) wasn't going to make the difference in the election," she told the Guardian last year.