New York congressman Charlie Rangel refused to believe protesters in his own city chanted support for cop-killers, prompting an incredulous CNN host to prove the Democratic lawmaker wrong.
Rangel appeared Monday with CNN anchor Ashleigh Banfield to discuss the killing of two NYPD officers on Saturday. The congressman said that he felt there was a need to discuss the problems faced by New York and its police, but that the past couple days were not, in light of the officers’ deaths, the time to talk about them.
“But it is the time, congressman,” Banfield said. “There are people who are marching through the streets calling for dead cops in New York.”
“They are not, they are not,” Rangel said dismissively.
Banfield cut to video that showed protesters chanting, “What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want them? Now!”
Rangel tried to backtrack, saying the protesters’ behavior is “not acceptable” and speculating that those chanting must be mentally ill. “We should condemn it,” he said, “but we shouldn’t just concentrate on that.”