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Anderson Cooper Went After Florida's Attorney General On LGBT Issues

Cooper noted the Florida attorney general said in 2014 that recognizing same-sex marriages in other states would cause "public harm" to her state.
Posted at 2:55 PM, Jun 15, 2016

"Do you really think you're a champion of the gay community?" Anderson Cooper asked.

CNN's Anderson Cooper didn't hold back from asking the tough questions while interviewing Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi on live TV on Tuesday.

Cooper referenced a brief Bondi filed in response to a 2014 lawsuit that claimed, because the state of Florida would not recognize same-sex marriages legally performed in other states, Florida was discriminating against those couples.

A part of Bondi's brief read, "Disrupting Florida's existing marriage laws would impose significant public harm."

After Cooper told Bondi some in the LGBT community thought of her as hypocritical, she said she was just trying to uphold Florida's Consitution.

"I've never said I don't like gay people. That's ridiculous," Bondi told Cooper.

But Cooper, who it should be noted came out as gay several years ago, kept pressing the issue, and Bondi seemed to get more flustered as the live interview went on.

"Are you saying you do not believe it would do harm to Florida?" Cooper asked. 

"Of course not. Of course not. Gay — gay people — no. I never said that," Bondi replied.

The interview got a lot of media attention, with many headlines calling attention to Cooper's tense line of questioning.

writer for Politico even described the interview as Bondi walking "into an Anderson Cooper-sized buzzsaw."

In his interview, Cooper also pointed out Bondi has "never tweeted about Gay Pride Month," though she has tweeted about National Dog Day. Her response?

"If you look at my website now, we have hands clasped together, all different-colored, rainbow-hands people," Bondi said.

Newsy couldn't find a "rainbow-hands" image on her campaign websiteofficial government website or any of Bondi's social media accounts.

On Wednesday, Bondi told WOR 710 Radio she went into the CNN interview believing Cooper would ask about helping victims and families who lost loved ones in Sunday's Orlando mass shooting.

"There's a time and place for everything. But yesterday wasn't the time nor the place in front of a hospital when we could have been helping victims.   Bondi said.

Bondi also accused Cooper of editing her interview, saying he and the network cut out a portion that focused on fraudulent money scams set up to look like they're helping Orlando victims. She wants CNN to either publish the entire interview or pull the story.

This video includes images from Getty Images.