In a segment Friday, CNN's Jake Tapper confronted Florida Rep. Matt Gaetz (R) over his choice of State of the Union guests.
"You brought to the State of the Union … somebody who is a fairly notorious racist and Holocaust denier," Tapper said, referring to alt-right personality Chuck Johnson. Gaetz confirmed to The Daily Beast earlier this week that Johnson attended President Trump's address with a ticket from his office.
Tapper invited Gaetz to explain his decision-making. In response, Gaetz said, "I would refer folks to the statement of the individual that attended, saying he is not a denier of the Holocaust, not a white supremacist." The Florida congressman also noted that Johnson claims to give money to organizations that "actually go and hunt down Nazis living double lives."
"I don't agree with everything Mr. Johnson says," Gaetz insisted. "But I think that when ... we only talk to audiences or people that agree with us, I think we end up in a myopic state of politics."
Tapper did not press Gaetz on his response, ending the interview moments later. Shortly thereafter, however, he did tag Gaetz in a tweet linking to an old post Johnson wrote on Reddit, where he claimed that less than a million Jews died in the Holocaust and said "the Allied bombings of Germany were a war crime." Kelly O'Meara Morales