By Rachel DeSantis
February 09, 2017 at 05:17 PM EST
Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

CNN anchor Chris Cuomo issued an apology Thursday afternoon after he equated the term “fake news” to the N-word on a radio show Thursday morning.

Cuomo made the comparison during an appearance on Michael Smerconish’s SiriusXM POTUS show in reference to an early morning tweet sent by Donald Trump.

“I see being called ‘fake news’ as the equivalent of the N-word for journalists, the equivalent of calling an Italian any of the ugly words that people have for that ethnicity,” he said. “That’s what ‘fake news’ is to a journalist. It is an ugly insult, and you better be right if you’re going to charge a journalist with lying on purpose. And the president was not right here, and he was not been right in the past.”

Cuomo tweeted an apology on Thursday afternoon, writing, “I was wrong. Calling a journalist fake -nothing compared to the pain of a racial slur. I should not have said it. I apologize.”

Cuomo’s original comments came after Donald Trump posted a tweet accusing Cuomo of disseminating “fake news” during his interview with Sen. Blumenthal.

“Chris Cuomo, in his interview with Sen. Blumenthal, never asked him about his long-term lie about brave ‘service’ in Vietnam,” Trump wrote. “FAKE NEWS!”

Trump’s attacks on Blumenthal (and subsequently Cuomo) stemmed from the fact that Blumenthal had previously told reporters that Judge Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s nominee for Supreme Court, had labeled Trump’s attacks on the judiciary as “demoralizing” and “disheartening.” Trump responded to Blumenthal’s comments by criticizing him for exaggerating his service in Vietnam.

Trump has also repeatedly categorized CNN as “fake news.”

Following the backlash over his own comments, Cuomo has continued to tweet out apologies and thanked his critics for calling him out.

“I want to thank you for calling me out for equating fake news with other slurs,” he wrote to one Twitter user who said he had been employing a double standard. “Wasn’t my intention to diminish but just saying it was too much.”

Read more of Cuomo’s tweets below.

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