Political operatives from the other Republican primary tickets heckled and berated CNN president Jeff Zucker during an event Thursday after Zucker defended the amount of air-time his network gave Donald Trump.
Reporters from Politico and The New York Times were in the room at the postelection panel at Harvard University to witness the confrontational exchange. “I have to respectfully push back on the campaign managers who spoke here today, because frankly, respectfully, I think that’s bullshit,” Zucker said.
The Republicans got particularly angry when Zucker claimed CNN would call the other candidates and offer time: “I don’t remember getting invited to call in,” “We didn’t get that call.” “We’d be invited for eight seconds.” “At 2 o’clock in the afternoon we’d be invited on,” they chimed in.
“You showed empty podiums! You showed hours upon hours of unfiltered, unscripted coverage of Trump, this was not about interviews,” insisted one audience member.
Zucker was also berated for his hiring of former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski . Lewandowski himself was in the room, reportedly fuming and leaving the room, only to come back to defend himself.
At one point The Washington Post‘s Karen Tumulty got in on it, asking about why CNN hired and promoted “nutjob” Trump supporters. “At what point do you say you cannot come on our air anymore because you have told too many lies?” she asked.
[Image via screengrab]