'100,000 people died, Joe, and all you did was try to help your friend the president': CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin unloaded on fellow anchor Joe Kernen over the severity of coronavirus

jzeballos@businessinsider.com (Joseph Zeballos-Roig)
CNBC's Andrew Ross Sorkin and Joe Kernen had a heated argument on "Squawk Box."

CNBC

  • CNBC hosts Andrew Ross Sorkin and Joe Kernen fiercely clashed on Wednesday morning over the severity of the coronavirus pandemic, which has killed nearly 100,000 people in the US so far.
  • "You panicked about the market, panicked about COVID, panicked about the ventilators, panicked about the PPE, panicked about ever going out again, panicked if we'd ever get back to normal," Kernan said.
  • "Joseph, you didn't panic about anything!" Sorkin responded. "100,000 people died, Joe, and all you did was tried to help your friend the president."
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CNBC hosts Andrew Ross Sorkin and Joe Kernen fiercely clashed on Wednesday morning over the severity of the coronavirus pandemic.

Each host lobbed accusations at the other, and the argument turned into a shouting match at one point.

The clash started after Kernen accused Sorkin of excessive pessimism throughout the outbreak, which has killed nearly 100,000 people in the US so far.

"You panicked about the market, panicked about COVID, panicked about the ventilators, panicked about the PPE, panicked about ever going out again, panicked if we'd ever get back to normal," Kernan said.

That characterization prompted an angry rebuttal from Sorkin. He accused Kernen of downplaying the death toll to aid President Donald Trump.

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"Joseph, you didn't panic about anything!" Sorkin said. "100,000 people died, Joe, and all you did was try to help your friend the president. That's what you did ... Every single morning on this show you have used and abused your position, Joe. You have used and abused your position."

Kernen interjected, saying he thought Sorkin's comments were "totally unfair," and added he was trying to help investors "keep their cool."

Sorkin later yelled: "I'm begging you to do the news!"

The exchange quickly spread on social media and some people noted Sorkin's unusual level of outrage.

"Angriest I've ever seen @andrewrsorkin," Ian Bremmer, president of Eurasia Group, a think-tank, said in a tweet.

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