AOC Goes After CNN: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez – or AOC – and others on the Left expressed outrage as former President Donald Trump appeared to come out on top in his CNN town hall. CNN moderator Kaitlan Collins challenged the former president’s narratives about January 6, rigging of the 2020 election, the E. Jean Carroll lawsuit, and other pending suits among others.
The discussion took place at St. Anselm College in New Hampshire before an audience of 400 Republican voters and Republican-leaning voters.
That was not good enough for Ocasio-Cortez, who expressed outrage in the wake of the $5 million civil judgement against Trump for inflicting sexual abuse on Carroll. The jury, however, did not find Trump liable for rape. George Washington University law professor faulted Trump for not having mounted a legal defense in the case.
The former president repeatedly denied having known Carroll apart from a casual acquaintance through her husband.
“CNN should be ashamed of themselves. They have lost total control of this ‘town hall’ to again be manipulated into platforming election disinformation, defenses of Jan 6th, and a public attack on a sexual abuse victim. The audience is cheering him on and laughing at the host,” she tweeted.
She appeared on MSNBC to complain about CNN’s decision to platform Trump.
“I know you said earlier that you will not comment on the platforming of such atrocious disinformation, but I would. I think it was a profoundly irresponsible decision … it was shameful,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
Ocasio-Cortez again attacked CNN with another tweet.
“This falls squarely on CNN. Everyone here saw exactly what was going to happen. Instead they put a sexual abuse victim in harm’s way for views. This was a choice to platform lies about the election & Jan 6th w/ no plan but to have their moderator interrupted without consequence,” she wrote.
Her perception of Collins’ performance was not shared by those on the other side. Trump supporters tweeted outrage at what they saw as Collins’ lack of respect for the former president.
“Can you imagine if a reporter interupted Biden and was as rude and arrogant to him like @kaitlancollins is being to Trump in the CNN townhall tonight?” former Trump National Security Council Chief of Staff Fred Fleitz tweeted.
Trump slammed Collins as a “nasty person.”
Trump Opponents Fume Over Event
Lincoln Project co-founder and Trump opponent Rick Wilson denounced CNN for “setting fire to democracy” by hosting the former president in a profanity-laced tirade.
“You are letting an insane person just stand there and giggle and laugh, and make jokes about rape. When he jokes about abortion. When he calls an African-American reporter a thug. This insanity should be pulled off the f***g air,” Wilson said in a video posted on his Twitter feed. “This is astoundingly bad for the brand of CNN. It’s astoundingly bad for the country. And, honestly, it’s astoundingly bad for every other Republican candidate in the primaries. Rap that s**t up. It’s done. You know you can’t beat him on the stage … It’s time to go to work because he’s going to be the nominee.
Wilson continued: “I have never seen anything like it. It’s a disaster of the highest f***g degree.”
Biden supporter Victor Shi, who labels himself the youngest Biden delegate from 2020 tweeted his disgust at the event, saying the outcome was “worse” than he had expected.
“This is a disaster. A complete disaster. Kaitlin Collins is trying to push back, but Donald Trump is in complete control. He is interrupting her, taking over the narrative, and spewing lie after lie. Congratulations, CNN. You have failed us, once again. Sickening,” Shi tweeted.
CNN’s Oliver Darcy lamented that it was 2016 all over again. Trump was untouchable.
“Trump lied about the 2020 election. He took no responsibility for the January 6 insurrection that those very lies incited. And he mocked E. Jean Carroll’s allegations of sexual assault, which a jury found him liable for on Tuesday,” Darcy wrote. “And CNN aired it all. On and on it went. It felt like 2016 all over again.”
John Rossomando was a senior analyst for Defense Policy and served as Senior Analyst for Counterterrorism at The Investigative Project on Terrorism for eight years. His work has been featured in numerous publications such as The American Thinker, Daily Wire, Red Alert Politics, CNSNews.com, The Daily Caller, Human Events, Newsmax, The American Spectator, TownHall.com, and Crisis Magazine. He also served as senior managing editor of The Bulletin, a 100,000-circulation daily newspaper in Philadelphia, and received the Pennsylvania Associated Press Managing Editors first-place award in 2008 for his reporting.