Las Vegas Mayor Battles With CNN’s Anderson Cooper: ‘That is… Really Ignorant’

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman appeared on CNN for an interview with host Anderson Cooper, when things got heated–fast. Goodman called for casinos and hotels to be reopened, which caused Cooper to call her “ignorant.”

Cooper asked Goodman, “You assume everyone has the virus is just asymptomatic. You want casinos open, Vegas back in business. Is that a responsible call to make?”

She responded, “That wasn’t the call that I was really making. It was to get people back to work. We have so many in our hospitality crew… We’re two-and-a-half million people down here in southern Nevada and we have so many out of work.”

Cooper said, “But you want the casinos open, yes?”

The mayor responded, “Well, that’s a piece of it. I want the hotel rooms open. We have 155,000 hotel rooms and most of our people who live here and are part of the population are hooked to those hotel rooms in some way or ancillary way.”

Cooper pushed back, “So you want hotel rooms, casinos, the theatres open? I mean you want Vegas back in business, no?”

“I want our restaurants open, I want our small businesses open, I want people back in employment,” Goodman responded. “We have so many families that can’t even afford to get the groceries for their family because they’ve been out of work for six weeks.”

Cooper pressed, “But casinos, you want them open? Because obviously, visitors are not going to come without casinos and shows and things.”

The mayor said, “Well, no, they’ll come because they love… We’ve got major league sports here. I’d love everything open because I think we’ve had viruses for years that have been here.”

Cooper eventually said that Goodman is “talking about encouraging hundreds of thousands of people to come to Las Vegas,” and said, “I get the financial losses people are suffering, which is awful, but you’re encouraging, I mean, hundreds of thousands of people coming there in casinos, smoking, drinking, touching slot machines, breathing circulated air, and then returning home to states around America and countries around the world. Doesn’t that sound like a virus petri dish?”

Goodman, getting visibly irritated, shot back, “No, it sounds like you’re being an alarmist.”

Later Cooper said that Chinese researchers “have shown how this virus spreads,” and put up a diagram of an infected restaurant. Goodman said,” “This isn’t China. This is Las Vegas, Nevada.”

Cooper responded, “Wow. Okay, that’s really ignorant. That’s an ignorant statement. That’s a restaurant, and yes it’s in China but they are human beings too.”

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