On Monday's edition of CNN's "The Lead," anchor Jake Tapper and correspondent Melanie Zanona discussed the efforts by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) to cover his lies about his private conversations urging former President Donald Trump to resign.
"Moments ago at the press conference on the border, you asked McCarthy about the big story involving McCarthy, the audio revealing that he had in fact told House Republicans that he would recommend that Donald Trump resign after January 6th," said Tapper. "That's something that McCarthy brazenly had denied and it's been proven publicly that he was lying. What did McCarthy have to say?"
"Well, I asked him flat-out, Jake, why were you not truthful about the private conversations?" said Zanona. "Remember, he flatly denied that reporting, and then the audios were released. Take a listen to what he had to say."
"The reporter never asked me that question," said McCarthy in the clip. "The reporter came to me the night before he released the book. And my understanding was he was saying that I asked President Trump to resign. No, I never did. That's what I was answering. If you're asking now, did I tell my members that — ask them if I told any one of them that President Trump, the answer is no."
"So essentially, what McCarthy is trying to say here is that he thought the Times was reporting that he had asked Trump to resign, that is not what the Times reported," said Zanona. "They just reported he had told other House Republicans that he planned to ask Trump to step down. And also, it is very important to point out here that McCarthy issued a statement vehemently denying The New York Times reporting, calling it false and wrong, after the Times had already published their article. So if he was confused about the reporting at the point when he was denying it, he should have known what was being reported."
"Doesn't even make sense, his denial," added Tapper. "As you know, his denial came out after the story."
"It's confusing, but I think he's trying to make it confusing," agreed Zanona.
"Yes, you can lie and then you can be good at lying," said Tapper. "He's — not that there's any great thing about being good at lying — but that's a horrible lie."
Jake Tapper and Melanie Zanona discuss Kevin McCarthy's lies about Trump conversations www.youtube.com