CNN’s Jake Tapper Praises Biden and Torpedoes Trump Over Interviews: No Rapid-Fire Falsehoods, No Attacks, More Substance


CNN anchor Jake Tapper contrasted his interview with President-elect Joe Biden and those he has conducted with outgoing President Donald Trump, noting that unlike Biden, Trump would tell a high volume of falsehoods, frequently attack interviewers, and “doesn’t really know what he’s talking about” on substantive issues.

On Friday morning’s edition of New Day, co-anchors John Berman and Alisyn Camerota quizzed Tapper about his recent interview with President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, their first joint interview since winning the White House.

Camerota asked Tapper to compare the experience with that of interviewing Trump, noting  that to interview Trump, “you really had to be up on everything because it was an unpredictable experience and you had to make sure that you held his feet to the fire if he was going to make some sort of claim that you knew not to be true.”

Tapper noted that “outgoing President Trump” — a designation Tapper used throughout the segment — “hasn’t given CNN an interview since he became president. So I don’t know what it’s like to interview President Trump, I know what it’s like to interview candidate Trump.”

Tapper went on to identify three main differences.

“First of all, as Daniel Dale has said, President-elect Biden says things that aren’t true, but in terms of the speed and the brazenness of the falsehoods, nothing compares to outgoing President Trump. It’s just as a factual matter.”

“Especially these days, with the craziness he’s saying about the election, I mean just bizarreness from a different planet,” Tapper added.

The second difference Tapper identified: “You don’t really have to steel yourself for the attacks.”

“It’s more just like what we’re used to normally on a day in and day out basis as journalists, where you ask questions that might be uncomfortable,” Tapper said and cited his question about Hunter Biden.

“I didn’t really have to steel myself for it because even if I knew—if he didn’t like the question—I knew he was going to behave like a rational adult,” Tapper said of Biden. “Maybe the worst that might happen is he might, you know, get his Irish up a little bit as they say, but I didn’t have to prepare for, like, a full-blown emotionally abusive session, which I think a lot of people who interview President Trump have to deal with.”

And finally, Tapper said that “more importantly, I think, was just the fact that this was just a substantive interview,” and ticked through some of the ground he covered with Biden.

“I think what was enjoyable as a journalist was, look, we all got into this business so that we could cover policy debates and discussions about issues that affect people’s lives,” Tapper said. “We didn’t get into this business to fact check or to call out racism or indecency, that’s not why we’re journalists, it’s what we spent a lot of time doing over the last four or five years, but it’s not why we got into the business.”

He added that while he enjoys interviewing people on substantive issues, “that’s honestly, that’s something that outgoing President Trump isn’t particularly good at in terms of substance, he doesn’t really know what he’s talking about a lot of times.”

Watch the clip above via CNN.

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