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Chris Cuomo Presses Rep. Tulsi Gabbard: ‘You Need to Acknowledge Bashar al-Assad Is a Murderous Despot’

CNN’s Chris Cuomo pressed Rep. Tulsi Gabbard on her views of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad Thursday night after Sen. Kamala Harris came after her as an “apologist” for Assad.

“I want to clear something up. You need to acknowledge that Bashar al-Assad is a murderous despot. I don’t understand why you didn’t give that answer last night,” Cuomo said.

This came after MSNBC’s Yasmin Vossoughian had pushed Gabbard to explain herself in regards to her Assad meeting earlier that day.

“I don’t dispute anything that you’re saying there. He’s a brutal dictator. Just like Saddam Hussein. Just like Gadhafi in Libya,” said Gabbard, before going into her usual talking point: “I will never apologize to anyone for doing all that I can to prevent more of my brothers and sisters in uniform from being sent to harm’s way to fight in these wasteful regime change wars even if it means meeting with a brutal dictator, focused on that objective.”

Cuomo said he didn’t take issue with any of that.  “I don’t understand why you have information there that questions the notion that Assad is responsible for things that the U.S. Intel and the United Nations Intel believe he’s responsible for. You don’t need to defend him to make your argument. I don’t understand.”

Gabbard said she was not defending Assad, but rather expresses skepticism on her website because she’s served in a war caused by “people who lied to us.” She went on to detail the 4,000 casualties of the War in Iraq. “So yes. I will always ask the tough questions,” she said. She pointed to a report by the Organization of Prohibition of Chemical Weapons that brought to light new evidence.

“They’ve raised questions about the dynamics. Nobody has exonerated Assad,” Cuomo pointed out.

Watch above via CNN.

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