CNN anchor Chris Cuomo — the brother of New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo — doesn’t like being called “Fredo.”
That much was clear after an individual standing near him called him by that name on Sunday night.
The encounter between Cuomo and the man occurred at a Shelter Island bar on Sunday, according to Mediaite.
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The television personality wouldn’t let it go.
The two got into an extended argument as people surrounded them and iPhones captured the exchange on video — complete with plenty of foul language on Cuomo’s part as he lambasted the man for using that name as an apparent ethnic slur.
Fredo Corleone is the fictional character from the well-known “Godfather” films — he’s the weak brother who doesn’t get much respect from his father or anyone else in the family.
Cuomo associated the use of that name aimed at him with that context — and found it highly disrespectful.
He told the man that the use of that name toward him and any other Italians was the equivalent of when black people are called the N-word.
Cuomo even threatened to “throw” the man “down a flight of stairs like a f****** punk.”
Most of the rest of the exchange can’t be recited here — as the language Cuomo used was far too foul for a family audience.
Cooler heads then prevailed as several men stepped between the two and broke up the exchange and warded off a potential fight.
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On Monday night, CNN announced that it was standing by its host.
“Chris Cuomo defended himself when he was verbally attacked with the use of an ethnic slur in an orchestrated set-up,” CNN spokesman Matt Dornic said in a statement on Twitter. “We completely support him.”
Sean Hannity of Fox News also defended Cuomo. In a tweet, Hannity wrote, “Good for [Cuomo] … He’s out with his 9 year old daughter, and his wife, and this guy is being a jackass in front of his family. Imho Chris Cuomo has zero to apologize for. He deserves the apology.”
See these tweets — and share your thoughts on this incident.
Does CNN’s head of PR still think “Fredo” is an ethnic slur after watching this? Because if it’s the N word for Italians like @ChrisCuomo says, I don’t understand why Chris seems so at ease with someone saying it here. An excuse just as fake as his news. #FredoCuomo https://t.co/8G8yuY80CK pic.twitter.com/1gwVyDVCob
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) August 13, 2019
— Chuck Woolery (@chuckwoolery) August 13, 2019
I am warmed by the fact that @ChrisCuomo will be known as Fredo in perpetuity.
— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) August 13, 2019
This article has been updated.