Jake Tapper Boasts to Stelter He Just Won’t Book Liars Like McEnany on His Shows

On Sunday’s Reliable Sources, CNN host Brian Stelter and his fellow host Jake Tapper collaborated to congratulate themselves on their brave efforts to hold Trump accountable. Not only did they rub each other’s backs throughout the segment, but Tapper boasted that he was braver than too many other “mainstream” reporters and that he just won’t lower himself to interviewing horrible liars like Kayleigh McEnany, who “lies the way that most people breathe.”

Tapper claimed, despite all the CNN theatrics in wailing against Trump destroying democracy, “we’re not wired as human beings for conflict. We’re actually wired against it. [!] You know, that’s why people get away with lying on so many interview shows just because it’s difficult to confront somebody.”

Everyone else didn’t seem to have the courage of CNN interviewers. 

Tapper continued: “And I think one of the things about the Trump era was you kind of had to steel yourself for interviews with people that might misrepresent the facts and might — and — and might — so, you know, at a — at a certain point once somebody like proved themselves to be a liar, I had to stop booking them. But — but sometimes you just had to steel yourself for an interview because you just didn’t know how off the rails it might go.”

So Stelter mentioned the many times CNN interviewed Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway, and whether than offered “diminishing returns because you weren’t getting the truth.” Tapper distinguished between Conway — who he liked to badger on camera — and McEnany, who he’s apparently far too ethical to interview: 

TAPPER: Well there are some people that are such — they’re just so mendacious, I just wouldn’t put them on air. Kayleigh McEnany, I — I never booked her. Jason Miller from the Trump campaign, I would never book him. I mean, these are just people who tell lies the way that, you know, most people breathe. There was no value in that. I don’t view Kellyanne Conway the same way. She was a senior advisor to the President. She was more of a filibusterer and a subject changer, I thought —

STELTER: Yes, a subject-changer That’s right. That’s what she was doing.

TAPPER: — Than a liar. And I — I think it’s different. I really do. And– and there is a risk in just, like, lumping everybody together. There’s a big difference between somebody like Kayleigh McEnany, who just like this is what she does, she tells lies all the time. She can’t acknowledge reality.

Tapper and CNN love to talk about failing to “acknowledge reality” after they’ve pushed wild disinformation about Trump for years, such as the Russia collusion hoax and the Russia pee tape.

Conservative Twitter roasted Tapper’s routine by reminding everyone of Tapper (alongside everyone else) interviewing the supremely mendacious Michael Avenatti, as well as promoting unsubstantiated accusers of Brett Kavanaugh (including the flaky one Avenatti was pushing). Or Tapper having the “ethical standards” to interview white supremacist Richard Spencer. We could throw in Truthiness Tapper proclaiming the “standard” that he would not interrupt any Parkland activist who wanted to smear Marco Rubio or Dana Loesch in a primetime “town hall.” 

Nevertheless, Tapper lavished praise on himself for taking “a stand” against Trump:

And I think that that position, the idea of I’m going to take the stand. I don’t care if you — if you falsely label me a tool of this party or that party, this is the truth. I think that Donald Trump succeeded in — with many of our colleagues in — in, you know, throwing the ball close to the batter so that they were scared, you know, the brush ball.  I think he scared people away and I think a lot of our colleagues failed to rise to the challenge.

Tapper wasn’t brave enough to name names of his cowardly colleagues. It might hurt him later as he scratches for a better time slot. 

This energetic exercise in patting each other on the back was sponsored by T-Mobile and Kraft. Let them know here if you think they should be sponsoring this content.

Read the full December 27th transcript here:

CNN Reliable Sources

12/27/20

11:46:52 AM

BRIAN STELTER: Four years of leaks, lies, and laments; controversies, cover-ups, and covfefe. So what now? Back with Jake Tapper. Jake, what was the most difficult for you about the last four years? I — I — I found it sometimes really hard to explain all of the whataboutism, all of the rhetorical techniques that we’ve seen from Trump and the pro-Trump media. You know, I say there’s disinformation campaigns out there and they say that CNN is producing disinformation. You know —

JAKE TAPPER (CNN CHIEF WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT, HOST OF THE LEAD WITH JAKE TAPPER): Right.

STELTER: — it’s this whataboutism, saying whatever you are doing, actually they are doing. I — I found it very difficult, these campaigns of confusion. And our job is, as you said, look to the camera and explain what is actually true. What did you find most difficult about the last four years? 

TAPPER: Well, there are two things I think. One is just the notion that President Trump was very skilled at making facts and decency into partisan issues. So if you stand up for just something that’s not true, or you stand up for something that is, you know, I stand up against something that the President was doing that was indecent, you know, the way he went after John McCain, as a — as a — as a very early example, you know, I prefer people who weren’t captured, smearing just the very concept of prisoners of war as people we should be honoring. That, a lot of people fell for that, you know, and a lot of reporters we should point out tried to — they ran away from it, you know. They — they bought into the — the proposition, well, Donald Trump is making facts and decency into partisan football, so I don’t want to be aligned withstanding up for that fact because somebody might tag me as a Democrat. That — that I think was challenging and I think frankly, a lot of our colleagues in the news media failed that test. Then the second thing is, look, running — doing interview shows is, you know, we’re not wired as human beings for conflict. We’re actually wired against it. You know, that’s why people get away with lying on — on — on so many interview shows just because it’s difficult to confront somebody. And I think one of the things about the Trump era was you kind of had to steel yourself for interviews with people that might misrepresent the facts and might — and — and might — so, you know, at a — at a certain point once somebody like proved themselves to be a liar, I had to stop booking them. But — but sometimes you just had to steel yourself for an interview because you just didn’t know how off the rails it might go.

STELTER: I noticed that about Trump aides on CNN. I mean, there were times in 2017 when Kellyanne Conway was on this network all the time. I remember interviewing her a few times and feeling like each time it was less valuable. Like I was getting less of value and substance each time. Did you have similar experiences? And you were doing it almost every week of course except for the weeks the White House wouldn’t provide any Whte House Trump administration guests. Did you feel like there were diminishing returns because you weren’t getting the truth? 

TAPPER: Well there are some people that are such — they’re just so mendacious, I just wouldn’t put them on air. Kayleigh McEnany, I — I never booked her. Jason Miller from the Trump campaign, I would never book him. I mean, these are just people who tell lies the way that, you know, most people breathe. There was no value in that. I don’t view Kellyanne Conway the same way. She was a senior advisor to the President. She was more of a filibusterer and a subject changer, I thought. 

STELTER: Yeah, subject changer. That’s right. That’s what she was doing. 

TAPPER: then a — then a — then a liar. And I — I think it’s different. I really do. And– and there is a —  there is a — a risk in just, like, lumping everybody together. There’s a big difference between somebody like Kayleigh McEnany, who just like this is what she does, she tells lies all the time. She can’t acknowledge reality. So I’m — I’m just not — just not going to put somebody like that on air. You know, I think a big challenge for the news media going forward is what do you do about the 126 House Republicans, including a couple of the house Republican leaders, who signed on to this crazy Texas lawsuit that even conservative legal scholars were calling garbage and insanity. Like, what are we supposed to do with these people going forward knowing that they are willing to sign onto something that dishonest? And not all — not all of them did, by the way, there are a number of them who didn’t. Kinsinger and — and, you know, Michael McCaul. There are a number of Congressmen who didn’t, Liz Cheney. But there are a majority who did. What are we supposed to do with the knowledge that these people are willing to sign onto such garbage? And make no mistake, it is the President and his minions who are responsible, not the millions of people who have been lied to and misled. They have been misled. They need to be told the truth. And we — that’s part of what we need to do in the — in the news media is try to help some of these people understand the truth once Trump goes away — 

STELTER: That’s why I’m — 

TAPPER: — from the White House — from the White House. 

STELTER: critical of Fox is that on Fox that — that’s the platform to tell a lot of these millions of people the truth, and oftentimes they fall down on the job. It — it does sound like you have disappointment in some of your journalist colleagues around Washington from — from these past four years. 

TAPPER: Yeah, I do. I — I — I think that — I think that, you know, we’ve been calling out lies from Donald Trump since 2015, 2016 and I remember the first time like I did like a homily or a muro or a monologue, whatever you want to call it, was when he was going after Ted Cruz’s dad over the Kennedy assassination, that nonsense. And I said this isn’t a pro-Cruz position or an anti-Trump position, it’s a pro-truth position. That was I think in spring 2016. And I think that that position, the idea of I’m going to take the stand, I don’t care — I don’t care if you — if you falsely label me a tool of this party or that party, this is the truth. I think that Donald Trump succeeded in — with many of our colleagues in — in, you know, throwing the ball close to the batter so that they were scared, you know, the brush ball. I — I — I think he —  I think he scared people away and I think a lot of our colleagues failed to rise to the challenge. Now, look, I — I also think there are people on the far left that went way too far, you know, calling Trump Hitler, and you know, I think people on the far right who defended every single thing he did no matter what it was. I mean, but I’m not talking about the extremes right now when I’m talking about my disappointment. 

View Original Source Source