Anderson Cooper, of CNN, and Martha Raddatz, of ABC News, moderate the second presidential debate between Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton at Washington University in St. Louis, Sunday, Oct. 9, 2016. (Jim Bourg/Pool via AP) (AP)

Donald Trump turns the tables on town hall debate moderators: Anderson Cooper, Martha Raddatz come under fire from Republicans

The Trump campaign is already complaining that moderators Anderson Cooper and Martha Raddatz were unfair


Sophia Tesfaye
October 10, 2016 8:17AM (UTC)

After the first general election presidential debate, Republican nominee Donald Trump complained that he was asked "unfair questions" by debate moderator Lester Holt. Ahead of the second debate, a town hall-style face-off against rival Hillary Clinton, Trump said, "I don’t think Anderson Cooper should be a moderator . . . he'll be biased."

It should come as no surprise then that when Trump appeared at the second debate on Sunday in St. Louis, he was fully prepared to compete against not just his Democratic rival, but also both of the mainstream media moderators, ABC News' Martha Raddatz and CNN's Anderson Cooper.

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“You described kissing women without their consent, grabbing their genitals; that is sexual assault," Cooper said to Trump during the first question, referencing a leaked 2005 tape in which Trump boasted of how he forces himself on women.

"You bragged that you have sexually assaulted women. Do you understand that?” Cooper quizzed Trump.

“No, I didn’t say that at all,” Trump barked back. “I don’t think you understood what was said."

“Just for the record, though,” Cooper cut in, “Are you saying that what you said on that bus 11 years ago, that you did not actually kiss women without consent or grope women without consent?"

“I have great respect for women,” Trump responded. “Nobody has more respect for women than I do. Frankly, you hear these things; they’re said.”

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“Have you ever done those things?” Cooper pressed. “Answer the question.”

Later in the debate when Cooper attempted to move on to another question from a voter, Trump lashed out.

"I liked to know, Anderson," Trump interrupted, "Why aren't you bringing up her emails?"

“You interrupt me all the time, why don’t you interrupt her?” Trump also complained.

“Nice, one on three," he later mumbled:

Watch Trump's battle against the moderators below, via CNN:

While Trump was done (for the time being), his campaign team was going strong.

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In a spin room following the town hall, Trump campaign adviser Rudy Giuliani told MSNBC's Chris Matthews that the moderators had been unfair to Trump and allotted Clinton more time to respond to answers.

Of course, Republicans on Twitter were also incensed at the moderators, per usual:

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Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's Deputy Politics Editor and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

MORE FROM Sophia TesfayeFOLLOW @SophiaTesfaye

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Anderson Cooper Donald Trump Elections 2016 Kellyanne Conway Martha Raddatz Video

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