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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (left) and President Donald Trump (AP photos)

A CNN commentator called Trump the 'MLK of health care.' It did not go over well.

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CNN political commentator Jeffrey Lord had high praise for President Trump on CNN's "New Day" Thursday morning. It wasn't exactly well-received.

Lord called Trump the "Martin Luther King of health care" for being willing to negotiate on health care reform even if it required using unpopular tactics. 

"Dr. King kept putting people in the streets in harm's way to put the pressure on so the bill would be introduced," Lord said.

CNN's Jeffrey Lord: 'Think Of President Trump As The Martin Luther King Of Health Care'

WATCH | Lord's comments inflamed an already heated debate between him and fellow commentator Symone Sanders.

Lord's comparison was a response to Trump hinting he might withhold payments necessary for the Affordable Care Act in order to force Democrats to negotiate with him.

Sanders did not take kindly to the comparison.

Lord faced steep criticism on Twitter after his comments.

Some directed criticism at CNN for giving Lord airtime. 

Some saw echoes of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer's infamous Hitler comments.

But some critics thought Sanders' response went too far.

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