Stelter: Jussie Smollett Story Was ‘Weaponized’

‘We have to wake to see what Smollett is going to say now’

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CUPP: "Brian, let me start with you. I'm sure, like me, you have been following this over the past week or two as has the country, this story has fascinated us. What is your reaction to this awful, awful news?"
STELTER: "Well, now the ball is back in jussie smollett's court. A spokesman for the Chicago police department tells me they did reach out to smollett's attorneys last night after receiving new information from those two men that had been questioned by police. What I was told by the Chicago pd is we we need to ask him additional questions. Is he going to cooperate with the investigation. Those are open questions. Because, from the very beginning, there were political con notations from the story, that were undeniable. Two attackers. This is Maga country. This became part of them and polarizing on day one. I wish it wasn't, but that is the reality. A story that makes it even more troubling. We have to wake to see what smollett is going to say now.
CUPP: "From inside, how do you think the media -- you know, the media had to cover this and had to cover this, you know, cautiously and responsibly. How do you think, on the whole, the media has done as a job?"
STELTER: "Strong, high quality, tried to be very careful. Two hours after the alleged attack, it was a trump supporter attack, with political connotations. Was able to be weaponized in many different ways. They orchestrated this. Why? He was afraid he was being rid of, they were going to kill off his character. They denied that was the case. There's still a mystery at the heart of the story."

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