Fired CNN host Chris Cuomo gave his first televised interview after his ouster Tuesday, saying he "never lied," had "no secrets," and never contacted other media to impact the coverage of his disgraced brother, former New York Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
"So, yes, there's litigation going on, but I'm telling you: I never lied and there were no secrets," Chris Cuomo told "Dan Abrams Live" on NewsNation in a one-hour interview, on a network he announced he would be joining in the fall to host a prime-time show.
Chris Cuomo was let go by CNN after an investigation found he was advising his brother amid sexual harassment allegations while serving as a prime-time television host. Andrew Cuomo was ultimately forced to step down as governor last summer.
"I never contacted any media who were covering my brother, to try to affect their coverage," Chris Cuomo told Dan Abrams. "I talk to people in the media all the time. They're most of the people in my life."
Chris Cuomo said any conversations with media members like Abrams were not aimed at influencing coverage of his brother.
"I think the distinction has a meaningful difference," Chris Cuomo continued. "The concern would be not that I called you and said 'What do you think's going on here?' It's me calling you and saying 'Hey tonight in your segment, I hope you remember that.'
"That's what I meant, and that's what matters."
Chris Cuomo also denied the allegations of his own sexual misconduct, saying it is up to the accuser to speak about the incident he said did not happen.
"I'm never going to be able to convince people one way or another," he said. "I feed the story if I comment on it."
Chris Cuomo is reportedly suing CNN for $125 million after his ouster.
"There are a lot of facts that I believe that are going to come out," Chris Cuomo said. "I've also learned they are largely only important to me, Dan, as far as what I want people to think, and how I want people to feel, and how I want them to see me. That's about me. I don't think that it's helpful to a lot of other people."
Chris Cuomo rejected the notion he has been a victim of cancel culture.
"I don't think I've ever been a victim of anything ever in my life," he said. "You make choices. You make a choice to be in this business. You make a choice to be in that dynamic and you want to be relevant, and it's not always going to be easy. It's not always going to be fair.
"My therapist has a great line: Fair is the only real four-letter word, you know, in terms of a curse.
"I don't feel sorry for myself. I'm certainly not a victim."
Chris Cuomo said he was merely seeking to help his brother through a tough spot in his life, claiming he was not "compromised" as a CNN anchor.
"I love my brother," he said. "The rule in my family is very simple: Family, trouble, goal. Other people have the luxury of judging allegations and situations. For me, it was about helping my brother in a hard way, and doing it in a way I didn't think compromised what matters, and that's what guided me."
"I am very proud of my brother," he added. "I love my brother and I'm proud of him for the struggle," he said. "I learned things about my brother, I learned things about my family — that makes me proud of him — to have to deal with the good, the bad and the ugly."
Chris Cuomo said he regrets "bringing this upon myself," and subjecting his family to the spotlight.
"Your kids are going to have to live with what you do," he said.
"It's complicated, being No. 1 at CNN," he added.
Chris Cuomo lamented not being able to say goodbye to his staff, but said he holds no grudges against former colleagues that came out to speak out against him after his ouster.
"They're good people, and I don't judge, period," he said.
"I cannot blame people for acting on what they're told. Should they have called me? Sure."
He said more people "on the right" reached out to him afterward, hailing his being able to draw more interviews from Republicans on CNN than others.
"The public doesn't trust anything – that has often been true in this country," he said, making a call for journalists to be more transparent about their political leanings. "It's probably more true now."
Later in the interview, Chris Cuomo announced he will be joining NewsNation for a prime-time show in the fall.
"I will try very hard to be fair, and I want to do it here," he said, vowing to reach the "free agents" among the moderate media consumers and saying "I'm absolutely different than I was in November."
"I think I can help."
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