Republican candidate for Senate Corey Stewart (Va.) had a testy exchange with CNN host Chris Cuomo on Friday as the two argued about Saturday's events in Charlottesville, Va., and the events following.
Cuomo opened the conversation by pushing Stewart to call the vehicle ramming in Charlottesville, which led to the death of Heather Heyer, an act of terror. Stewart said that the man driving the vehicle was a murderer and needs to be punished. However, he said he was not in a position to label it an act of terror, and only the authorities and prosecutors working on the case could do so.
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Stewart further condemned what he called the left and democrats' refusal to condemn Antifa and other far left-wing organizations that promote violence. He said the media should condemn those groups that have often turned violence as in the shooting of Sen. Steve Scalise (R, La.), in past protests, and in Charlottesville Saturday.
"They're encouraged, they're emboldened, and they're going to to it again," Stewart said. "And the blood is going to be on your hands."
Cuomo disagreed with Stewart's assessment of the media.
"I encourage you to not be reckless with the truth on this particular show," Cuomo said.
"You can made your general dispersions. I get that it is a clever defense when you have nothing valuable to say. But what I'm telling you is this. The idea, Corey Stewart, that we or anybody else didn't jump on the situation with what happened to Steve Scalise, that we didn't call it out for what it was, that we didn't call out the person who did it and the ideology that might have motivated it, is not just factually –," Cuomo said before Stewart interjected.
"Did you call that terrorism?" Stewart asked. "Did CNN call the shooting of Steve Scalise – did you Chris Cuomo describe that as a terrorist act?"
"If the authorities had said it was, I would not have disagreed with them just to motivate my own agenda," Cuomo said.
"And that is my own response as well," Stewart said.
Stewart and Cuomo continued to argue over who knew more about the Chartlottsville events while they talked over one another.
"They are thanking you, Corey Stewart," Cuomo said in reference to the KKK.
Stewart said that he and all Republican lawmakers condemn the KKK. He accused Cuomo of not listening, and said CNN was biased by being interested in hearing only one opinion.