(CNN)

CNN focus group of conservative women turns out to be comprised of GOP operatives

CNN interviewed women about the Brett Kavanaugh allegations, but they weren't casual voters as presented


Taylor Link
September 23, 2018 8:56PM (UTC)

Earlier this week, CNN interviewed five conservative women from Florida to get their thoughts on the sexual assault accusation made against Brett Kavanaugh. To viewers' horror, most of the women downplayed the allegation. They said that an incident that happened over 30 years ago cannot be used to indict Kavanaugh's character now.

“How can we believe the word of a woman of something that happened 36 years ago. This guy has an impeccable reputation. There is nobody that has spoken ill will about him,” Lourdes Castillo de la Peña, one of the focus group members, said

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“But in the grand scheme of things, my goodness, there was no intercourse. There was maybe a touch. Really? Thirty-six years later she’s still stuck on that, had it happened?” Irina Villarino said.

“I mean, we’re talking about a 15-year-old girl, which I respect. I’m a woman. I respect. But we’re talking about a 17-year-old boy in high school with testosterone running high. Tell me, what boy hasn’t done this in high school?” Gina Sosa asked.

The segment, which aired on "Anderson Cooper 360," shocked many viewers due to the callousness of the women and their disregard for Christine Blasey Ford's claims.

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A deeper look into the women interviewed show that they were not average Republican voters, as the chyrons suggested. Journalist James Surowiecki reported that three of the women involved were either a GOP political operative or a candidate who ran for office as a Republican.

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CNN framed the focus group as a small, but credible sample of what Republican women were thinking about the Kavanaugh allegation. That CNN plucked three GOP operatives to use for the segment dramatically skews how that demographic actually feels about the situation. CNN has yet to comment on the criticism of the segment.

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Watch the full interview below:


Taylor Link

Taylor Link is an assistant editor at Salon. You can find him on Twitter at @taylorlink_

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Brett Kavanaugh Christine Blasey Ford Cnn Conservatism Focus Group Gop Sexual Assault

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