On Tuesday, Parasite hater Donald J. Trump went on a pardoning spree, waving his presidential magic wand over 11 convicted felons. One of them was disgraced former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, who in 2006 was found guilty of soliciting bribes for political appointments, among them Barack Obama’s former Senate seat. Why did the staunchly Republican president pardon a lifelong Democrat? Possibly because both were impeached. Whatever the reason, the newly freed Blagojevich — who served eight years of a 14-year sentence — has been making the TV rounds to talk about prison reform, and one appearance did not go so well.
Blagojevich was on CNN, where he wound up grilled by an increasingly incensed Anderson Cooper, who was nonplussed when his guest defended his commutation by calling himself a “political prisoner” and claimed his sentence came as the result of “corrupt prosecutors.” Cooper pushed him on every point, but when Blagojevich began talking about prison reform, the host challenged him, arguing that he didn’t do enough on that subject when he was governor.
“It’s a little ironic and frankly a little sad and pathetic and hypocritical you talking about getting a commutation of a sentence, which is within the president’s right, but you ignored a whole hell of a lot of other people who were hoping you might give them clemency when you actually mattered,” Cooper charged.
Blagojevich fired back. “When you have all the time that I was given to think and look back on some of the things you might have done different, that’s certainly an area that you talked about that I wish I had done more on,” he said. “I didn’t know how corrupt the criminal justice system was until they did it to me.”
The two continued to squabble, but as the segment ended Cooper wished him well. But when Blagojevich implied that Cooper’s word were not sincere, Cooper went ballistic.
“The president can commute whoever he wants. I just think — I wish — you’re besmirching prosecutors who actually are no longer in government, but prosecutors are important in our system and you are going after the very basis of our justice system, which has plenty of problems but, you know, part of the thing is you got out, you do have an obligation to at least admit what you did wrong and you refuse to do that and you’re creating a whole new alternate universe of facts and that may be big in politics today but it’s still frankly just bulls*it.”
Blagojevich countered that it’s “not bulls*it.”
It’s always a big occasion whenever someone of Cooper’s buttoned-down mien lets loose a cuss word, and the combination of that and irritation over the president’s pardoning spree created a perfect storm for social media hoorahs.
Hooooooly shit. Anderson Cooper just mopped the floor with Blagojevich, calling him out – literally – on his “bullshit.”
Watch every second of this.pic.twitter.com/xmkusZrmh4
— Brian Tyler Cohen (@briantylercohen) February 22, 2020
Anderson Cooper went to TOWN on Rod Blagojevich: “you have an obligation…to admit what you did was wrong…you’re creating a whole new alternate universe of facts and that may be big in politics today, but it’s still frankly just bullshit.” pic.twitter.com/87c1Fkg0rN
— Amee Vanderpool (@girlsreallyrule) February 22, 2020
Anderson Cooper showed why he’s one of the best in the business tonight. Thank you for setting the record straight about Rod Blagojevich. pic.twitter.com/D2v9lMDm0E
— David Cicilline (@davidcicilline) February 22, 2020
1. To completely lack empathy for disenfranchised people to the point of malice until you, yourself, are forcibly placed in the exact same position as the people in question
2. To get your ass handed to you on live TV by Anderson Cooper
— Padma Lakshmi (@PadmaLakshmi) February 22, 2020
“You do have an obligation to at least admit what you did wrong and you refuse to do that and you’re creating a whole new alternate universe of facts.
“And that may be big in politics today but it’s still frankly just bullshit,” CNN’s Anderson Cooper tells Rod Blagojevich. pic.twitter.com/P0dRZH7n19
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) February 22, 2020
Others were livid that this doesn’t happen more often.
I see no reason why Trump merits better treatment by interviewers than what @andersoncooper gives Rod Blagojevich here. The same evidence of corruption, crimes, and certainly “bullshit” is widely available to the press. And it should outrage us this much. pic.twitter.com/GxgCSJJpNQ
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) February 22, 2020
Written by: Uproxx