CNN Lets Maxine Waters Try to Tie Her GOP Critics to 'KKK'

On Tuesday's New Day on CNN, as California Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters appeared as a guest, host Chris Cuomo failed to challenge her hyperbolic attempts to link her Republican "right wing" opponents to the 'KKK" as he only mildly pressed her on her recent claim that she would "take Trump out tonight."

After spending the first part of the segment discussing the conflict between President Donald Trump and Florida Democratic Rep. Frederica Wilson, Cuomo brought up a recent clip of her from an LGBT event. Cuomo recalled:

This has become an ugly war of words -- not just in this situation. This is just the latest iteration. You have been a member -- a named combatant in this battle as well. I want to play some sound from a recent LGBT event that you were at that has drawn a lot of criticism. Let's listen to it.

Then came a clip of Rep. Waters:

What a moving evening this is. I am sitting here listening, watching, absorbing, thinking about Ali, even though I never met him. And with this kind of inspiration, I will go and take Trump out tonight.

The CNN host then pressed: "Those words have been interpreted as an attempt on the President's life. How did you intend them?"

In her response, Rep. Waters brought up the KKK and tried to tie her critics to the white racist group:

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That's absolutely ridiculous. Nobody believes that a 79-year-old grandmother who is a congresswoman and who has been in Congress and in politics for all of these years is talking about doing any harm.

The only harm that I may be doing to the President is I want him impeached, and those people who are so opposed to my leadership on impeachment are organizing -- the right wing, the white nationalists, the KKK -- they've organized an effort to try and, of course, defeat me in my election coming up, and to discredit me.

After the California Democrat ranted a bit more about the need to impeach President Trump, Cuomo ignored her hyperbolic KKK reference as he followed up:

So when you were saying "take him out," you were talking about your efforts to impeach him. Let me ask you something. Understood. Gave you the opportunity to respond to it -- thank you for taking it. So let's say it wasn't a threat against the President's person, but this talk is ugly talk on both sides.

Do you believe that you and others should start and be the change that you want to see and have a more high level of decency in how you discuss those whom you want to criticize, especially when it's the President of the United States?

Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of the Tuesday, October 24, New Day on CNN:

CHRIS CUOMO: This has become an ugly war of words -- not just in this situation. This is just the latest iteration. You have been a member -- a named combatant in this battle as well. I want to play some sound from a recent LGBT event that you were at that has drawn a lot of criticism. Let's listen to it.

REP. MAXINE WATERS (D-CALIF.) [CLIP]: What a moving evening this is. I am sitting here listening, watching, absorbing, thinking about Ali, even though I never met him. And with this kind of inspiration, I will go and take Trump out tonight.

CUOMO: Those words have been interpreted as an attempt on the President's life. How did you intend them?

WATERS: That's absolutely ridiculous. Nobody believes that a 79-year-old grandmother who is a congresswoman and who has been in Congress and in politics for all of these years is talking about doing any harm. The only harm that I may be doing to the President is I want him impeached, and those people who are so opposed to my leadership on impeachment are organizing -- the right wing, the white nationalists, the KKK -- they've organized an effort to try and, of course, defeat me in my election coming up, and to discredit me. Everybody knows that I'm on the front lines -- not talking about any physical harm to anybody, but I am talking about impeachment, and I'm not going to stop. I believe this President is not worthy. I think that this President should not be representing our country. He has alienated our allies. He continues to lie day in and day out. He creates controversy. He can't get along with the members of Congress. He needs to be impeached. I want him impeached, and I'm going to continue my efforts to call for his impeachment.

CUOMO: So when you were saying "take him out," you were talking about your efforts to impeach him. Let me ask you something.

WATERS: Absolutely, absolutely.

CUOMO: Understood. Gave you the opportunity to respond to it -- thank you for taking it. So let's say it wasn't a threat against the President's person, but this talk is ugly talk on both sides. Do you believe that you and others should start and be the change that you want to see and have a more high level of decency in how you discuss those whom you want to criticize, especially when it's the President of the United States?

WATERS: I think that I have been extremely responsible in laying out the case for why this President should be impeached. I know that the right wing, the white nationalists, all of those who are organized around this President, do not like this. And people are not accustomed to a woman, in particular, an African-American woman, taking this kind of leadership. How dare me challenge the President of the United States?

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