CNN host Chris Cuomo came under fire Thursday for an awkward attempt to disprove President Donald Trump's claim that he has never been able to overhear other people's nearby phone calls.
The president earlier had sent out a tweet to debunk House impeachment hearings testimony by David Holmes, who said he overheard a damning July 26 phone call between Ambassador Gordon Sondland and Trump.
Cuomo, in a bid to prove Trump wrong, made an on-air call to his mother, Matilda Cuomo, the widow of former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo — first without the speakerphone on — to prove viewers and his co-hosts would hear everything.
"Let's just play with that for a second. Mom, can you hear me?" asks Cuomo while holding his phone out in front of him.
After a moment of uncomfortable silence, he moved the phone toward CNN journalist Dana Bush.
"Can you just say hello?" Cuomo asks, as the stare blank-faced for several seconds without a response.
Cuomo then flips on the speakerphone, at which point his mom's voice is audible.
Following the failed stunt, another co-host mocked, "I can't hear your mother, Chris. You're over there . . . I'm sitting across the table."
Critics went nuts.
Joe Concha, a reporter for The Hill, tweeted the stunt was "the most ill advised thing we've witnessed on live TV since Marcia Clark had OJ try the gloves on."
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