CNN political commentator S.E. Cupp didn’t mince words on Monday morning as she blasted several Fox News hosts as “evil” for suggesting that Democrats invented the latest super-mutated COVID-19 variant as part of a politically motivated conspiracy.
Amid global concerns that the Omicron variant will spark a new round of lockdowns and restrictions, a number of Republicans and pundits have claimed that the Democratic Party is using fears over the virus—which was first detected in South Africa—to “cheat” in the upcoming midterms.
During a weekend broadcast of morning show Fox & Friends, for instance, all three hosts implied that the White House was overplaying the danger of COVID variants to sway the next election. Fox News contributor Sean Duffy, meanwhile, said Democrats would use Omicron as a way to change election rules, all while asserting that the party “stole” last year’s election due to COVID.
Appearing on CNN’s New Day, Cupp blasted the Fox & Friends crew for casually declaring that we can “count on a new variant every October” to impact elections, noting that this form of conspiracy-mongering “didn’t happen overnight” at the network and that “Fox is a drug.”
“It sounds bonkers,” she exclaimed. “And yet, all three of them kind of in unison, just very cavalierly joking that this is probably a political invention. It is irresponsible, but that’s the floor.”
Cupp then added, “That’s evil! That is evil! To get up and tell your viewers, ‘Don’t worry about it. It’s probably just made up and so don’t believe any of the other science. Don’t believe about vaccines or boosters or anything else because it’s probably just Democrats.’ I don’t know another word for that.”
CNN analyst (and former Daily Beast editor-in-chief) John Avlon followed up by saying, “It is certainly beyond cynical,” especially considering the pandemic has resulted in over 750,000 dead Americans and millions of deaths worldwide.
“They are playing to the cheap seats,” he continued, prompting anchor John Berman to point out that “it’s absurd” and “ridiculous” to think additional variants and uncertainty over an ongoing pandemic would help Democrats politically.
“Either this is a real, huge problem or it’s not. Let’s hope it’s not,” he stated. “But let’s not spread lies while we’re waiting.”
Cupp would go on to say that modern conservatism is now just about telling “people they are aggrieved” and constantly telling “them who to blame.” Additionally, she pointed out that President Joe Biden needs to speak out against this rhetoric.
“There has been this idea to kind of ignore the crazy. Not to feed into it,” she concluded. “I think Biden needs to call this out and say what you just heard on Fox is insane. It makes no sense. It’s bonkers.”