CNN anchor Chris Cuomo Wednesday rejected the idea that the Hillary Clinton campaign accepted dirt on then-candidate Donald Trump from a foreign government during the 2016 election, saying there isn’t “any proof” of it.
During a panel discussion debating President Trump’s remarks that suggested that he would “take” opposition research from a foreign government and not report it to the FBI, pro-Trump commentator Rob Astorino expressed that the president was “wrong” but pointed out what he described as a “double standard” between the uproar of what Trump “might do” in 2020 as opposed to the former secretary of state, who “did do it.”
“Her campaign and the DNC paid for a foreigner’s information on her opponent,” Astorino said. “So it’s already been done. And this is the double standard and hypocrisy that we’re seeing today… We don’t even have an investigation into how Hillary Clinton did this or why she did it and the Democrats are saying ‘don’t do that investigation.'”
CNN panelist Van Jones dismissed Astorino’s commentary as him being on the “‘what about Hillary Clinton’ bandwagon” and that she’s “not president.” Cuomo agreed, insisting it’s not a “viable argument.”
“The fact that people do things the wrong way does not justify our president condoning this,” Cuomo told Astorino.
“You’re right and I’m not arguing with you on that one,” Astorino responded. “But the truth is, if one of the candidates had the, quote, golden ticket; if somebody came up with an envelope and said, ‘Within that envelope is the information that will take down Trump and make you president,’ please, if you don’t think they’re going to open that envelope or leak it to the press, which is exactly what happened with Hillary, you’re joking yourselves … I’m not saying it’s right, I’m saying it’s been done.”
“That’s the same thing as saying that it’s right,” Cuomo shot back. “You’re saying other people would do it, that’s why he said it. ‘That’s how this works.'”
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“No, I’m saying who did it was Hillary Clinton and nobody wants to have that discussion,” Astorino responded.
“Look, it’s just not apples to apples,” Cuomo argued. “We don’t have any proof that Russia as a government came and said ‘here’s value for you on Donald Trump and you can pay us for it if you like.’ We have the opposite proof, which is that they came time and time again with things they thought would help Trump and put it out there and his people around him were only too eager to try to get more of it.”
It has been determined since the 2016 election that the Clinton campaign and the DNC funded the infamous Steele dossier that relied on intelligence from the Russian government.