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CNN’s Cuomo lays into Trump for church threats: He wants to ‘distract you with the ugliest things’

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CNN's Chris Cuomo

On CNN Friday, Chris Cuomo excoriated President Donald Trump for his threat to force states to lift orders restricting church gatherings.

“Forget about whether or not he has the right,” said Cuomo. “Is his saying it right there, even right to do? When is the last time you saw him coming out of services, by the way? Why is it so important to him now? I wonder if it has anything to do with the politics of division.”

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“Basic questions, what would have kept places of worship closed?” continued Cuomo. “If you’re Catholic, heard it from the churches themselves. We got to find out safest way to do it. They discouraged us from coming early on and encouraged teleservices. Why? Because that’s the safest way to worship. This president seized on an opportunity to wrap himself in cloak of righteousness. It’s familiar territory for a man who once told me he gets audited so much maybe because he’s such a Christian.”

“So rather than staying and answer questions, he left it to Kayleigh ‘I shall never tell a lie’ McEnany to paint any who question this situation as anti-God,” continued Cuomo, playing a clip of the exchange. “See the game they’re playing? Don’t want to focus on what they need to do, but distract you with ugliest things. Accusing people who ask about safety to be anti-God, want churches closed? Is that where we are now? Here are the facts: Trump can’t order churches open … true faith is in one another to keep ourselves and others safe. He didn’t put the rules to keep people safe and he doesn’t get to decide when to lift them. Period.”

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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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