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No evidence': CNN host pushes back when Elizabeth Warren calls Steve Bannon a 'white supremacist

No evidence': CNN host pushes back when Elizabeth Warren calls Steve Bannon a 'white supremacist

CNN host Anderson Cooper pushed back against Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D), who supported Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during the election, for labeling one of President-elect Donald Trump's top advisers a "white supremacist."

The clash came when Warren accused controversial Trump campaign CEO Steve Bannon, a former Breitbart executive soon to be the president-elect's chief strategist, of being a racist.

"[Trump’s] got as his strategic adviser someone who's a white supremacist," she said of Bannon during an interview on CNN's "Anderson Cooper 360º."

But Cooper quickly interjected: "Wait a minute, there’s no evidence he’s a white supremacist. Obviously, there are people who are white supremacists who support Donald Trump and support Breitbart or Steve Bannon."

Warren, clearly frustrated by Cooper's challenge, began rolling her eyes and exhaling at the suggestion that it has not, in fact, been proven that Bannon is a "white supremacist."

"Come on," she grumbled. "Steve Bannon has certainly associated himself with white supremacists — will you go that far?"

The CNN anchor again told Warren he's not certain it's fair to just accuse Bannon of practicing racist ideologies.

"This is a guy whose appointment is applauded by the [Ku Klux Klan]," Warren retorted. "He’s associated himself with white supremacists. Is that close enough?"

"What Donald Trump is doing — so far — is that he’s said he’s going to go forward on bigotry and he’s going to go forward on Wall Street insiders," she continued. "I think this is a real problem for the American people."

The accusation that Bannon is a "white supremacist" stems largely from his work with Breitbart News, a website that is certainly friendly to the so-called "alt-right," which, while not innately a white nationalist faction of right-wing politics, has certainly been a comfortable home for those who subscribe to a white supremacist worldview.

Trump, for his part, told the New York Times last week that he would never have hired Bannon "if I thought he was a racist or alt-right or any of the things, the terms we could use."

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