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McAuliffe Shuts Down Interview with Local Reporter: 'You Should've Asked Better Questions'

Bob Brown/Richmond Times-Dispatch via AP

Virginia gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe abruptly ended an interview with a local news station after telling the reporter that they "should've asked better questions."

ABC 7 reporter Nick Minock interviewed McAuliffe and his Republican opponent, Glenn Youngkin, last week and gave each candidate 20 minutes to speak on how they would lead Virginia if elected governor in next month's election. However, McAuliffe shut down his interview after only around 10 minutes.

The station's anchor, Jonathan Elias, told viewers who may have noticed a time discrepancy between the two interviews that both candidates were offered the same amount of time.

"So if you watch those entire interviews on our website, we do want to point out that the Terry McAuliffe interview is shorter than our interview with Glenn Youngkin. That was not by our doing," Elias said during Tuesday's evening newscast. "Nick offered both candidates 20 minutes exactly to be fair for the interviews. McAuliffe abruptly ended 7News' interview after just ten minutes and told Nick that he should have asked better questions and that Nick should have asked questions 7News viewers care about. That's what he said."

The ABC 7 transcript shows the one-time Democratic governor cut the interview short after one of his staffers claimed that they had run out of time.

"Hey, I gave you extra time," McAuliffe told Minock as he stood up to leave. "C’mon, man. You should have asked better questions early on. You should have asked questions your viewers care about."

McAuliffe said in the interview, before he prematurely ended it, that "parents should have a voice" in their child's education after being questioned about his remarks at a Sept. 28 debate, when he said: "I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach."

However, he also said that he did not misspeak during that debate before alleging that Youngkin was using a "racist dog whistle" by looking to ban critical race theory in schools.

"He's talking about issues that don't even exist in Virginia and we've got to move past that," McAuliffe said. 

The Democratic candidate also pointed out that he would look to increase the minimum wage and create paid sick days if elected governor. 

Additionally, McAuliffe attempted to link Youngkin to former President Donald Trump immediately before the interview was shut down.

"He is a Donald Trump right-wing agenda. He will ban abortions," McAuliffe said. "Your viewers should be very clear on this. He wants to ban abortions here in Virginia. He says election integrity is the number one issue. No, it isn’t. Healthcare, COVID, education, job creation."

Youngkin warned in his interview that, for people not vaccinated against COVID-19, McAuliffe wants to "make your life difficult." The Republican businessman also said that he stands for individual freedom while claiming that McAuliffe stands for himself and big government.

As the Nov. 2 election nears, recent polls show the gubernatorial race to be extremely tight. A Friday poll from the Trafalgar Group shows Youngkin leading McAuliffe by a single point while a Fox News poll from last week has the Democrat with a five-point edge.

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