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GOP senator flails when CNN asks if he’ll back Trump in 2020 — and calls it a ‘gotcha’ question

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Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) on Thursday refused to say if he would back President Donald Trump’s reelection bid in 2020 when asked by CNN’s Chris Cuomo — and he tried to turn the tables back on Cuomo by saying he was playing “gotcha” journalism.

Noting a CNN report by Manu Raju that found Republicans were reluctant to give their full-throated endorsement to Trump despite the fact that he’s already announced he’ll seek reelection, Cuomo asked if Johnson wanted to break the mold and give Trump his backing for the 2020 campaign.

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“It’s way to early to talk about 2020,” Johnson said.

“No it isn’t!” Cuomo interjected. “Not to say that you support the guy, the president, who’s the head of your party?”

“It could be a completely different world by 2020, we have a 2018 election first, look, I understand the kind of ‘gotcha’ question you’re engaging in here,” Johnson replied. “It’s just way too early to be talking about it.”

Cuomo, however, kept pressing.

“To [not] say that you back the head of your party that’s currently president — you don’t think that’s unusual?” he asked.

Johnson replied that his main goal at the moment was to help Trump “keep this nation more prosperous.”

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2020 Election

Trump accused by ex-Defense Secretary of putting US on ‘the trail toward a dictatorship’

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During an appearance on CNN on Friday morning, former Defense Secretary William Cohen - who also served in the U.S. Senate as a Republican -- denounced Donald Trump in no uncertain terms, saying his use of military personnel against anti-police brutality protesters is a sign he has set the country on the path to a dictatorship.

To emphasize his point, he later called Trump the "dictator-in-chief."

Speaking with host Jim Sciutto, Cohen didn't mince words after the CNN host noted that the president and his former attorney called the protesters "terrorists."

"What does it mean for you to hear a sitting president dismissing a whole range of protesters, who in fact were largely peaceful around the White House, dismissing a whole range of them as terrorists? What does that mean to you?" the CNN host asked.

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Richmond mayor schools white lawmaker complaining removal of Confederate statue strips her of her history

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Appearing on CNN's "New Day" on Friday morning, the mayor of Richmond, Virginia set a white state lawmaker straight over her comments that the imminent removal of a statue commemorating Confederate General Robert E. Lee was erasing her history.

Speaking with host John Berman, Mayor Levar Stoney expressed pleasure at the upcoming removal of the massive statue, saying it was a long overdue -- before the interview turned to comments made by State Senator Amanda Chase (R) made in a Facebook post.

Noting that the white lawmaker complained, "Let's be honest here, there is an overt effort here to erase all-white history," Stoney had a few words for the lawmaker.

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2020 Election

Trump ‘crossed the line’ with the military this week — leading retired officers to revolt: former general

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Appearing on CNN's New Day with host John Berman, retired Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute explained that Donald Trump finally went a bridge too far this week with retired military officials when his administration deployed military police to turn on peaceful protesters in a Washington D.C. park.

Speaking with the host, Lute -- who also served as U.S. ambassador to NATO -- said tension between the president and military officials has gradually increased over the past three and a half years, but that the past week's incidents led to a "tipping point."

After host Berman read off a list of high profile ex-military officials who have either criticized Trump or defended their former colleagues from attacks from the president, Lute was asked what had changed.

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