CNN's Cuomo Stumbles, Denies 'All Jihadis are Muslim'

CNN's Chris Cuomo made a gaffe regarding the religious faith of ISIS and other similar groups on Wednesday's New Day. When Senator Lindsey Graham accused Donald Trump of "playing into ISIL's hands," Cuomo replied, "Sixty percent of your party agrees with him. They think all jihadis are Muslim." Since jihad is a concept from the Islamic faith, a jihadi, by definition, would indeed be a Muslim waging a religious-based war for Islam. [video below]

The CNN journalist, along with co-anchor Alisyn Camerota, conducted a very friendly interview of the Republican presidential candidate (which contrasts with their usual hostile approach to Republican/conservative guests). An on-screen graphic touted, "Graham One-Liners Highlight Undercard Debate" [see screen cap above]. Midway through the segment, Camerota brought up the South Carolina politician last appearance on the CNN morning newscast: "The last time you were on with us on New Day, you...actually had a suggestion for Donald Trump. Do you still feel as strongly? Do you think that Donald Trump has tempered some of his language?"


    
Senator Graham replied by contending that "he's [Trump has] tempered it a bit." Cuomo clarified what his guest had said, and made a crack about it: "So when you say Donald Trump should go to hell, have you now changed the circle of hell? Is that what you're saying? It's no longer the seventh circle. He's in the third?" The senator's answer set up Cuomo's trip-up. Graham actually gently corrected the CNN anchor: "All jihadis are Muslims, but the only way we're going to win this war is to partner with the 90 percent."

The transcript of the relevant portion of Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota's interview of Senator Lindsey Graham from the December 16, 2015 edition of CNN's New Day:

ALISYN CAMEROTA: The last time you were on with us on New Day, you said you had a way to make America great again — and it wasn't Donald Trump's suggestion. (Graham laughs) You actually had a suggestion for Donald Trump. Do you still feel as strongly? Do you think that Donald Trump has tempered some of his language, or do you still feel as strong—

[CNN Graphic: "Graham One-Liners Highlight Undercard Debate"]

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know, he's tempered it a bit. All I'm saying is that—

CUOMO: So when you say Donald Trump should go to hell, have you now changed the circle of hell? (Graham and Camerota laugh) Is that what you're saying? It's no longer the seventh circle. He's in the third?

GRAHAM: I think we should all tell any politician to go to hell, when they basically declare war on another person's faith. It's one thing to deal with radical Islam. We must. We must defend ourselves. I want an NSA program that can pick up the attack before it happens. I want to fight the war over there before it comes here. We are at war.

The bottom line: what Mr. Trump is doing, is doing the one thing we can't afford to do — is to denigrate the faith as a whole. He is playing into ISIL's hands—

CUOMO: Sixty percent of your party agrees with him.

GRAHAM: And I don't believe that—

CUOMO: They think all jihadis are Muslim.

GRAHAM: All jihadis are Muslims, but the only way we're going to win this war is to partner with the 90 percent.

NB Daily Campaigns & Elections 2016 Presidential Foreign Policy Africa Iraq Middle East Syria Labeling War on Terrorism Conservatives & Republicans Religion Islam CNN New Day Video ISIS ISIL Chris Cuomo Alisyn Camerota Lindsey Graham Donald Trump
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