Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe refused to admit during a CNN interview on Sunday that George W. Bush won the 2000 presidential election, which comes as Democrats pan some Republicans for not accepting the results of the 2020 election.
CNN host Dana Bash played clips from remarks that McAuliffe made in the past where the former Virginia governor, who is running for a second, nonconsecutive term, claimed without evidence that Democrats “actually won the last presidential election” and that the Supreme Court “stole the last presidential election.”
When asked to respond to his comments, he said “the 2000 election went to the United States Supreme Court.”
“Going back to 2000, do you think Republicans stole that election?” Bash asked.
“I wish the United States Supreme Court had let them finish counting the votes,” McAuliffe answered.
DANA BASH, CNN HOST: I want to ask you about another issue. You were — mentioned Donald Trump. I’m glad I have two cups here, so I can keep drinking when you mention Donald Trump’s name. But you accuse your opponent of playing into the big lie by campaigning on so-called election integrity. You just did it this morning.
TERRY MCAULIFFE, VIRGINIA GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE (D): Yes.
BASH: I want to play some of your comments over the years on this issue.
MCAULIFFE: Sure. Sure.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BASH: If Katherine Harris, Jeb Bush, Jim Baker, and the Supreme Court hadn’t tampered with the results, Al Gore would be president.
Folks, you know it. I know it. They know it. We won that election!
We actually won the last presidential election, folks. They stole the last presidential election.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BASH: So, you’re being criticized for saying, well, wait a minute. The Republicans are questioning election integrity, when that’s exactly what you did multiple times in more than one election.
How do you respond?
MCAULIFFE: First of all, the 2000 election went to the United States Supreme Court.
The United States Supreme Court shut down the voting, overruled the Florida Supreme Court, and stopped the counting of votes. That is quite a difference from what you had in the Trump election, where 33, 34 cases, whatever it, was brought up. Republican judges dismissed it.
BASH: Yes. And I don’t mean — and I don’t mean to suggest…
MCAULIFFE: There’s no comparison.
BASH: What happened in 2000 was so different.
BASH: In 2020, Joe Biden won, full stop.
MCAULIFFE: Fair and square.
BASH: No question.
MCAULIFFE: But the…
BASH: But I guess, going back to 2000, do you think Republicans stole that election?
MCAULIFFE: In 2000?
MCAULIFFE: I wish the United States Supreme Court had let them finish counting the votes.
But, listen, Glenn Youngkin has run the entire campaign on election integrity. He says it is the single most important issue facing Virginians. No, I think health care, I think dealing with COVID, I think education is.
And he just said two days ago that we ought to audit all of Virginia’s voting machines. Really? This is all the Trump talk. And I’m just surprised Trump hasn’t gone to Virginia yet.
I mean, Glenn Youngkin has been in bed with him now for — since he started this campaign. He said he — five times, he’s been endorsed. He’s honored.
MCAULIFFE: But he says he’s so much — after the nomination: So much of the reason I’m running is because of Donald Trump.
Let me be clear to Virginians. I’m running for you.
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