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Gabbard: My past Assad comments were misunderstood
02:27 - Source: CNN
Washington CNN  — 

Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard on Sunday characterized a recent critical report about her campaign as “fake news,” invoking a defense oft-used by President Donald Trump to attack the credibility of negative press coverage.

Appearing on ABC’s “This Week,” Gabbard was asked about her record on Russia by host George Stephanopoulos, who cited an article published last week by The Daily Beast titled “Tulsi Gabbard’s Campaign Is Being Boosted by Putin Apologists.”

The piece said her campaign was being “underwritten by some of the nation’s leading Russophiles,” citing donations from three supporters of the Kremlin and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The piece noted that Gabbard, who represents Hawaii, “is one of her party’s more Russia-friendly voices in an era of deep Democratic suspicion of the country over its efforts to tip the 2016 election in favor” of Trump.

“You know, it’s unfortunate that you’re citing that article, George, because it’s a whole lot of fake news,” Gabbard said. “What I am focused on is what is in the best interest of the American people. What is in the best interest of our national security. Keeping the American people safe.”

The congresswoman did not specify what in the article was “fake.” Her campaign did not respond to CNN’s request for comment on Monday.

Gabbard’s use of the term “fake news” to dismiss the article echoed Trump’s repeated use of the term to attack the credibility of negative coverage both he and his administration have received from various outlets.

Democrats and other opponents of Trump have denounced his use of the term, arguing that by calling legitimate news fake, the President is chipping away at the credibility of the American press.