‘It’s stupefying to watch’: Jim Acosta and Jake Tapper stunned by White House’s ‘depressing’ wiretap defense
CNN’s Jim Acosta spoke with “The Lead” host Jake Tapper after Sean Spicer’s contentious press briefing on Thursday. During that briefing, the White House press secretary dug his heels in Donald Trump’s unfounded claim that former president Barack Obama wiretapped Trump Tower.
Acosta and Spicer engaged in a heated back and forth during that press briefing, as Spicer refused “to answer the question, ‘What is the reaction to the Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman, Richard Burr, a Republican … and the ranking Democrat, Mark Warner of Virginia, both saying they have not seen any evidence to indicate there was wiretapping going on at Trump Tower.”
Acosta noted the White House has “broadened the definition of wiretapping in the days since the president put out that baseless tweet … because the original tweet is a false claim, it’s a falsehood.”
“It is a sort of stupefying thing to watch, Jake,” Acosta continued. “The fact that the president will not come out and withdraw this accusation. He clearly made a false accusation aimed at the former president, Barack Obama, that he was wiretapped over at Trump Tower. And why we’re having to pull this out, like we’re pulling teeth, is beyond me.”
“It sort of defies credulity,” Acosta added, noting Spicer quoted news articles from a publication Trump frequently dubs the “failing New York Times” in order to bolster the president’s claim.
“It was really almost depressing to watch,” Acosta said.
“It’s incredible,” Tapper agreed. “I mean it defies any sort of reason or logic.”
“Why the president just doesn’t come out and withdraw the accusation is beyond me,” Acosta said, later noting, “Donald Trump just does not admit when he’s wrong. He just doesn’t do it … But he was clearly wrong.”
“Nobody is buying it up on Capitol here, nobody’s buying it here in the press room. So who believes it?” Acosta asked.
Watch the video below, via CNN: