The national spokesperson for the Republican National Committee was corrected by a MSNBC host and ridiculed by a GOP strategist on Saturday over her ham-handed defense of Ivanka Trump’s use of private email for government business.
Ivanka Trump, a senior White House advisor and daughter of the president, was caught using her personal email account in violation of government regulations — despite the fact that Hillary Clinton doing the same was a centerpiece of her father’s 2016 presidential campaign.
Yet RNC spokeperson Kayleigh McEnany attempted to defend Ivanka’s transgressions regardless, even interrupting fellow guest Peter Emerson.
“All I know is this is a deliberate — deliberate — attempt to circumvent the rules. It’s a pattern in the history of the Trump family when they were in real estate,” Emerson noted, as McEnany shouted, “That is untrue.”
“Consequently, there’s no question in my mind that she knew the rules, she decided to break them, because they’re above the rules, they’re above the law — unlike the rest of us,” Emerson added.
“This was before she was ever briefed on the rules, so to say it was deliberate is just inaccurate, McEnany argued.
MSNBC anchor Alex Witt stepped in to remind McEnany that Trump’s criticism of Clinton’s email use had been a focal point of his campaign.
“Do you think it speaks well of Ivanka Trump, where she didn’t just say, ‘This was a huge problem all my father talked about this all the time on the campaign trail.’ I’ve got to be honest, I wouldn’t have needed to be briefed,” Witt noted.
“I don’t think it was a lapse of judgement at all, I think when she’s juggling ten things at once and making child care plans that happen to touch on official business, she wasn’t thinking about the public records act, certainly not before being briefed,” McEnany replied.
“Alex, I’m sorry, I got to jump in here,” said Sophia Nelson, former House GOP committee counsel and Republican congressional candidate.
“Hillary Clinton was making wedding plans for her daughter’s wedding on her emails, does she get a pass?” Nelson asked. “No, she gets chants of ‘lock her up, lock her up, lock her up.'”
“You know Kayleigh — you’re a smart woman — that this is bad optics for the White House,” Nelson continued.
“You can’t say ‘lock up’ one woman and the other one gets a pass,” she concluded.