GOP Senate candidate Corey Stewart, who is running to be the Republican nominee to challenge Senator Tim Kaine in 2018, joined CNN’s Chris Cuomo Friday to discuss the Charlottesville riot and death of Heather Heyer.
Stewart started by stating, “Obviously it’s a great tragedy, but what’s even more tragic is CNN trying to exploit this woman’s death to try and say all the violence was caused by the far-right when you know darn well there was violence by both sides. For example Antifa, a radical, left-wing, violent organization that you and other liberals have failed to condemn.”
Cuomo responded by asking why Stewart would defend the suspect in the car attack, James Fields, but Stewart insisted he never did.
“Chris did you ever hear me defend him? I’m never going to defend a murderer. You defend violent lefties like Antifa. I’ve never heard any Republican defend this son of a gun who murdered this poor woman.”
The two went on to spar over whether the Charlottesville attack was an act of terror or not, with Stewart insisting it depends on what the prosecutors decide “If they say it’s terrorism, it’s terrorism.”
Stewart then criticized the left and Democrats for refusing to condemn the shooting of Steve Scalise as terrorism, saying, “By the way you’ve never condemned any of the violence that’s occurring by the left, which means they’re encouraged, emboldened and are going to do it again and the blood will be on your hands.”
Cuomo snapped back, “Corey, I caution you not to be reckless with the truth on this particular show.”
Chuckling, Stewart responded, “You’re reckless on the truth every morning!”
Cuomo replied, “You can make your general aspersions. 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…”
“Did you call that terrorism?” Stewart interrupted. “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.
The pair continued arguing over whether or not conservatives have done enough to condemn the KKK and neo-Nazis.
“They are thanking you. Your friend Jason Kessler is thanking you. Why is David Duke thanking you, why is David Duke thanking the President for what he said?” Cuomo retorted.
Stewart shot back, stating, “Look, the President did the right thing by condemning the violence on both sides, something the left and CNN have refused to do, including a lot of establishment Republicans. They’re afraid to do it because you and the rest of CNN and the leftists will label any conservative as a fascist and a racist. That’s what Antifa does, they say death to all fascists and then label all conservatives as fascists.” He went on to say, “What happened that day is you had a fight between two radical, left-wing and right-wing, extremists who came there for a fight and we need to condemn both sides otherwise, Chris, you’re going to get more violence from the side that wasn’t condemned.”
Cuomo continued to argue that when groups like neo-Nazis and the KKK showed up in Charlottesville it wasn’t about the statue, it was a ruse.
Stewart asked, “How many times do conservatives have to say this? Everybody condemns neo-Nazis and the KKK, but the question is when is the left going to condemn far left terrorists like Antifa?”