Video shows Chris Cuomo in altercation after man calls him 'Fredo'

CNN on Monday defended late-night anchor Chris CuomoChristopher (Chris) Charles CuomoScaramucci: Trump sees Bloomberg as threat Schiff: Trump helped House Republicans plan to storm SCIF NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo uses N-word during radio interview MORE after video surfaced showing him getting in a heated, profanity laced confrontation with an individual who referred to him as "Fredo," a fictional character from "The Godfather."

"Chris Cuomo defended himself when he was verbally attacked with the use of an ethnic slur in an orchestrated setup," CNN spokesperson Matt Dornic said in a statement on Twitter late Monday. "We completely support him."

The video, which was first shared on YouTube and other social media platforms, shows Cuomo repeatedly cursing at a man who appeared to mock him by calling him "Fredo." It is unclear when and where the exchange took place. 

"Punk ass bitches from the right call me Fredo," Cuomo says to a man standing beside him. "My name is Chris Cuomo. I’m an anchor on CNN. Fredo is from 'The Godfather.' He was a weak brother and they use it as an Italian aspersion."

 

Cuomo, an Italian, then argues that the term "Fredo" is a racist slur similar to calling an African American the N-word. 

Following those remarks, the man who initially confronted Cuomo tells him that he's a "much more reasonable guy in person than you seem to be on television."

"If you want to play then we’ll f---ing play," Cuomo responds. "If you’ve got something to say about what I do on television then say it."

The man replies by claiming that he thought the CNN host's name was Fredo, leading Cuomo to become increasingly agitated. 

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"You’re going to have a big f---ing problem," Cuomo says at one point, before telling the man that he'll "f---ing throw you down these stairs like a f---ing punk."

Several people can then be seen getting in between the two of them and holding Cuomo back. 

The video was first released by the YouTube channel "That's The Point with Brandon," an outlet that highlights its support of President TrumpDonald John TrumpFive landmark moments of testimony to Congress Lindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight Democrats sharpen their message on impeachment MORE on its "about" page. Trump has repeatedly attacked CNN and its coverage throughout his presidency. 

Some Trump aides immediately took issue with Cuomo's characterization that "Fredo" was a slur comparable to the N-word. 

"The N word is a dehumanizing word used against blacks who endured years of oppression," Katrina Pierson, a Trump campaign aide, said on Twitter. "Fredo is a term from The Godfather, referring to the dumb brother. Equivocating the two is pure racism.

"I assume @cnn not available for comment," Donald Trump Jr.Donald (Don) John TrumpSean Spicer eliminated from 'Dancing with the Stars' Trump Jr.: How can Dems beat Trump if they can't boot Sean Spicer from DWTS? Founder of veterans group says Trump Jr. can join the military if he 'really wants to understand what sacrifice is all about' MORE, the president's eldest son, tweeted. "Imagine their coverage of this if they were a real news organization?"

Former White House communications director Anthony ScaramucciAnthony ScaramucciScaramucci: Trump sees Bloomberg as threat Scaramucci: Trump will be gone by March 2020 Scaramucci hits back after Bullock solicited personal message of praise MORE defended Cuomo, saying on Twitter that "this happens all the time" and it's "quite racist."

Fox News host Sean HannitySean Patrick HannityTop diplomat says Giuliani's 'campaign of lies' took down veteran ambassador Hannity slams Fox News polling on radio show Sean Hannity says he never spoke with Pompeo about Ukraine MORE also came to the defense of Cuomo, saying that Cuomo was the one who deserved an apology.