CNN on Sunday night condemned a violent pro-Trump video that depicts a gunman made to look like president attacking journalists, celebrities, political figures and Black Lives Matter.
“Sadly, this is not the first time that supporters of the president have promoted violence against the media in a video they apparently find entertaining — but it is by far and away the worst,” CNN said in a statement.
“The images depicted are vile and horrific. The president and his family, the White House and the Trump campaign need to denounce it immediately in the strongest possible terms,” the cable network added.
— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) October 14, 2019
The statement followed a report Sunday in the New York Times that said the graphic video was shown last week during a conference of the president’s supporters at the Trump National Doral Miami resort in Florida.
The Times said it obtained the video from a man who attended the conference and recorded the footage with his phone. Journalist Yashar Ali posted the video on Twitter Sunday night.
It shows the gunman inside what’s called the “Church of Fake News.” He opens his suit jacket, pulls out a gun and begins shooting, stabbing and beating people in the church. The parishioners’ heads were replaced by news media logos, the faces of celebrities and Trump’s political rivals.
The Trump campaign told the Times it was not responsible for the video.
“That video was not produced by the campaign, and we do not condone violence,” said campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh.
The footage includes a scene from the film Kingsman: The Secret Service and is set to music. It shows the gunman attacking CNN, Vox, Politico, The Washington Post and Vice News. He stabs Huff Post and entertainment figure Rosie O’Donnell, then throws Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) out of a window.
The killer continues his rampage by setting Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) on fire. He shoots Black Lives Matter, and Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah). The man then beats former President Barack Obama, shoots CBS at close range, and punches former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. He strikes the late Sen. John McCain, attacks former President Bill Clinton, and Harvey Weinstein. Near the end of the video, comedian Kathy Griffin is stabbed with a spear.
“I’m depicted as being murdered by The President of the United States in this video,” Griffin tweeted. “The left, right & center left me hanging out to dry regarding the Trump mask photo. Please don’t let it happen again. No, this video isn’t a joke to his followers. And it will not be taken as such.”
The White House Correspondents Association also denounced the video, saying in a statement it was “horrified” by the images.