It's a rare occasion to see leading hosts from rival cable news networks defend one another publicly. Yet, on Tuesday, Fox News' Sean Hannity stood behind Chris Cuomo after the CNN anchor went viral for his response to being called "Fredo" while on an outing with his family Sunday night.
A video that surfaced on Monday and quickly went mega-viral showed a visibly angry Cuomo responding to a stranger who apparently called him "Fredo," according to The Hill.
"Punk a** b****es from the right call me Fredo," Cuomo says to the stranger who purportedly used the name. "My name is Chris Cuomo. I'm an anchor on CNN. Fredo is from The Godfather. He was a weak brother and they use it as an Italian aspersion."
Cuomo explained to the stranger that the "Fredo" crack was like calling an African American "the N-word." The heated CNN anchor then threatened to throw the man down the stairs.
Instead of piling on, Hannity tweeted out what came as a shock to many social media users -- a message of support defending the prime-time CNN anchor.
Hannity said Cuomo had nothing to apologize for and was only defending himself and his family. He doubled down and wrote that Cuomo was the one who deserved the apology.
CNN's Matt Dornic issued a statement on Twitter following the viral spread of the confrontation, stating without question that they fully support Cuomo. It was also alleged that the incident was "orchestrated" and that Cuomo was "verbally attacked" with an ethnic slur.
Donald Trump Jr. also weighed in on Twitter, asking if the word was now a racial slur would anyone who called him "Fredo" be fired.
Trump campaign aide Katrina Pierson took a heavy jab at Cuomo in a Monday night tweet, calling him out for comparing the word "Fredo" to a "dehumanizing word used against blacks who endured years of oppression."
President Donald Trump took a different approach than Hannity, instead choosing to slam Cuomo in a series of tweets and a video posted on Facebook of the famous outburst scene from Godfather II that had Cuomo's face superimposed on Fredo's and Trump's face on Michael Corleone's.As previously reported on The Inquisitr, Trump also fired off a tweet raising the question that asked if Cuomo would pass the proposed "Red flag laws" after his profanity-laced rant was made public.
The laws, if passed, would give authorities the ability to take firearms away from people deemed mentally unfit to possess them.In a Tuesday tweet, Cuomo posted a tweet thanking his supporters for defending him but explained that he wasn't happy with his response to the stranger's insult. He said that it happens a lot and that he wants to be "better than what I oppose."