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WATCH: Jake Tapper dismantles GOPer arguing journalists who cover Roy Moore allegations are ‘peddling in gossip’

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Jake Tapper on Friday took down former Alabama Republican party chairman Marty Connors over the allegations levied against GOP Senate candidate Roy Moore, after the Republican accused the CNN host of “peddling in gossip.”

Tapper asked why the former chairman is so “skeptical” about allegations levied in the Washington Post about Moore.

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“Well, first of all, I want to state something very important,” Connors said. “I’m a father of a daughter. I take these things very, very seriously.”

“I mean, you’re the journalist,” he continued, referring to Tapper. “Don’t you find it mildly—just mildly—curious that this would be coming out within a month of a big election where the Senate is on the line, where tax reform is on the line, where Obamacare is on the line? I mean, it’s kind of timely, don’t you think?”

Tapper pointed out that women are sometimes inspired to come forward after seeing other women come forward, referring to the recent allegations levied against Harvey Weinstein, Bill O’Reilly and Louis C.K. H also pointed out that “it takes a while in many cases for women who have horrible incidents like this allegedly in their past to get the courage to come forward.”

The story in the Washington Post had 30 sources, including these four women coming on the record,” Tapper later said. “If that’s not enough for you, what kind of standard or burden of proof are you looking for?”

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“It’s just the timing of the whole thing that really doesn’t pass the smell test,” Connors said.

Connors later argued that “establishment” Republicans are urging Moore to step down because they’re “covering [their] backside.”

“You know, the Washington Post—I‘m not sure they’re the most credible source for news in the state of Alabama,” he added.

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“I mean I don’t know why you would say that, it’s one of the best newspapers in the country,” Tapper shot back.

“You’re impugning the Washington Post, but what about the four women?” the CNN host. “These are four Alabama women who have similar stories about Roy Moore in his 30’s coming on to them, according to them when they were 14, 16, 17 and 18. One of the women is a [Donald] Trump supporter.

“Well, one says she’s a Trump supporter,” Connors replied, before insisting he “[takes] everything they say at face value.”

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“You just said you take what they say at face value, but you’re is not taking what they say at face value, you’re doubting what they’re saying,” Tapper examined.

“Here’s a question for you, if it came down in an election between a Republican who had been proven a child molester or a Democrat, would you vote for the Democrat?” the host asked.

“I would vote against the child molester, if proven,” Connors insisted. As Tapper explained that four women have gone on the record, Connors told the CNN host to “not peddle gossip.”

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“I don’t think a story with 30 sources and four women making the accusations on the record is gossip,” Tapper replied.

Watch the video below, via CNN:

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

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