Anderson Cooper was left scrambling to figure out how to fill Chris Cuomoâ€™s hour of airtime after the host was suspended from CNN, according to a report from the network.
The â€œCuomo Prime Timeâ€ team was still preparing to go live on Tuesday night when the suspension was announced, the CNN reportÂ said. Cooperâ€™s team was equally unprepared for the change-up, with the report describing them as â€œblindsided.â€
Cuomo, whose primetime hour is often the most-watched program on the news channel, wasÂ suspendedÂ â€œindefinitelyâ€ following the release of a transcript on Monday by Democratic New York Attorney GeneralÂ Letitia JamesÂ that detailed the hostâ€™s improper advisement of his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
â€œSome news about this network,â€ CooperÂ toldÂ viewers on Tuesday night. â€œIt involves Chris Cuomo, the host of â€˜Cuomo Prime Time.â€™ New documents released this week indicated that Chris was more intimately involved than previously known in helping his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo craft a defense amid a flurry of sexual misconduct allegations.â€
Cooper then read a statement from aÂ CNNÂ spokesperson about the suspension. â€œThe New York Attorney Generalâ€™s office released transcripts and exhibits Monday that shed new light on Chris Cuomoâ€™s involvement in his brotherâ€™s defense,â€ the spokesperson said.
The texts showed Cuomo hadÂ used his media contactsÂ to secure information on those who accused his brother of sexual harassment. In one exchange between Cuomo and Melissa DeRosa, a then-top aid to his brother, the host was asked to â€œcheck your sourcesâ€ about a â€œrumor going around from politico 1-2 more ppl coming out tomorrow.â€
â€œWhen Chris admitted to us that he had offered advice to his brotherâ€™s staff, he broke our rules and we acknowledged that publicly,â€ the CNN spokesperson said.
â€œBut we also appreciated the unique position he was in and understood his need to put family first and job second,â€ the spokesperson said. â€œHowever, these documents point to a greater level of involvement in his brotherâ€™s efforts than we previously knew.â€
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