Wolf Blitzer criticized Michele Bachmann with uncharacteristic fervor for the Republican's attacks on Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin.
Bachmann has attracted substantial condemnation from other Republicans, including John McCain and her former campaign manager Ed Rollins, for suggesting that Abedin may be connected to the Muslim Brotherhood. On Thursday, Blitzer argued with Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen, who said that Bachmann's attacks were not worth covering. It was a notably personal moment for Blitzer, who usually steers clear of hard-charging rhetoric.
"It was really a terrible thing to do," Blitzer said.
"Michele Bachmann is irrelevant. She's irrelevant," Rosen replied.
"She's not irrelevant," Blitzer shot back. "She's a lawmaker. She represents nearly a million people from Minnesota. What do you mean?" He called it "an outrageous McCarthy-like charge to be sure."
Later, in a new personal commentary segment Blitzer has introduced to the show in the last few weeks, he went further.
"I have been very upset about a McCarthy-like attempt to smear one of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's closest aides, Huma Abedin, someone I have known for years," he said. "...The insinuations are outrageous."
He continued, "Yes, she is a Muslim. But the last time I checked, there was nothing illegal about being a Muslim in America. There are millions and millions of patriotic Muslim Americans."