Meghan McCain Blames Reporters For ‘Breakdown of Trust’ With Trump After NPR-Pompeo Fracas
Meghan McCain came to Mike Pompeo’s defense on The View Monday after the secretary of state called NPR reporter Mary Louise Kelly a liar and suggested she couldn’t find Ukraine on a map.
Kelly drew headlines over the weekend after claiming Pompeo berated her and tried to insult her intelligence after walking out of an interview when her questioning turned to the Ukraine scandal.
The secretary of state didn’t deny Kelly’s allegations of a expletive-laden meltdown. Instead, he responded by calling her a liar, accused her of violating an off the record agreement, claimed she didn’t know the difference between Ukraine and Bangladesh, and called the encounter proof of “how unhinged the media has become in its quest to hurt President Trump and this Administration.”
When The View went over the details on Monday, Whoopi Goldberg, Joy Behar, and Sunny Hostin panned the “Secretary of Petty” and took Kelly’s side. McCain, however, appeared to blame the political press for a “breakdown of trust” between media and the current administration.
“This is now the second notable person that’s walking out of NPR, so I don’t know what’s going on over at NPR,” McCain said, referencing a recent incident when actor Adam Driver walked out of an interview.
“I will say, if you go into an interview and you’re someone like Mike Pompeo and you say ‘I want to talk about this, I don’t want to talk about this’ and you agree ahead of time and that journalist breaks the agreement, I can understand how you would get frustrated. I didn’t think he sounded that angry either. Apparently they went to another room and got into a fight — which is ridiculous as well — but I will say the breakdown between the trust between the media and the White House right now, I think, is because of this, because you have journalists reporting off the record information all the time.”
“We don’t know that’s what this is because she apparently has all of the texts between them,” Goldberg said, pushing back on McCain. This led to McCain pronouncing the blow-up a “he said/she said” situation.
Despite McCain’s claims, the Washington Post published a report including copies of the emails Kelly exchanged with Pompeo’s press aide. They show that — contrary to Pompeo’s claim the interview was set up to exclusively focus on Iran — Kelly made it clear she would ask about a variety of subjects, including Ukraine. What’s more, while Pompeo claimed that their post-interview encounter was off the record, Kelly has disputed that. She said that Pompeo’s staffer “did not say we were off the record, nor would I have agreed” to those terms.
From the Washington Post:
“Just wanted to touch base that we still intend to keep the interview to Iran tomorrow,” Martin wrote. “Know you just got back from Tehran so we would like to stick to Iran as the topic as opposed to jumping around. Is that something we can agree to?”
Kelly responded, “I am indeed just back from Tehran and plan to start there. Also Ukraine. And who knows what the news gods will serve up overnight. I never agree to take anything off the table.”
Martin replied, “Totally understand you want to ask other topics but just hoping . . . we can stick to that topic for a healthy portion of the interview . . . Wouldn’t want to spend the interview on questions he’s answered many times for the last several months.”
Kelly: “My plan is to start with Iran and, yes, to spend a healthy portion of the interview there. Iran has been my focus of late as well. And yes — I also would not want to waste time on questions he’s answered many times in recent months.”
Watch above, via ABC.
Have a tip we should know? [email protected]