Kellyanne Conway: Press tenions 'not healthy'

Christiane Amanpour speaks with the counselor to President Trump about tensions between the White House and the media.

Posted: Sep 11, 2018 5:36 PM
Updated: Sep 11, 2018 6:06 PM

President Trump has called the press almost every nasty name in the book. But his advisors say they don't always agree with him.

Kellyanne Conway, for one, does not endorse Trump's "enemy of the people" rhetoric.

In a new interview, this prompted CNN's Christiane Amanpour to ask her, "Then do you try to weigh in with the President on this issue?"

Amanpour repeatedly pushed Conway about the president's anti-media attacks in an interview for the premiere of "Amanpour and Company."

The new program on PBS, which effectively replaces Charlie Rose's nightly talk show, is an extension of Amanpour's existing program on CNN International.

Referencing the toxic relationship between Trump and the news media, Amanpour asked the counselor to the president if she sees "some way to get out of this thing that doesn't seem to be good for you or for us."

"I'll respond in a few ways," Conway said. "First of all, I do agree that it's not healthy for the body politic on either side."

That's a noteworthy comment, given the president's sustained "fake news" attacks against the news media.

Conway went on to say that "I and others have tried, the president has tried, to turn down the temperature, to give more access."

But she quickly turned to her core complaint about negative coverage.

"We talked about the economic reports. I think the media will start covering the economy if it ever goes down," she said. "I think they'll start covering the regulation if it ever starts going up again."

Every administration complains about not getting a fair shake from the press corps, though. One of the differences with Trump is the way he tries to delegitimize and even dehumanize reporters.

That's what Amanpour, one of the world's best known international correspondents, tried to get at with Conway: The damaging effects of Trump's words and actions.

She pointed out that a California man was recently arrested for calling in threats to the Boston Globe.

"At what point," Amanpour asked, "is there a red line for you, personally, in the rhetoric causing potential danger and having consequences?"

Conway dodged the question and bemoaned the amount of media attention devoted to "palace intrigue" and "personnel" over "principles and policies."

Amanpour pressed her again. "There are also all sorts of despicable and undemocratic leaders all over the world who are taking seriously" Trump's attacks, taking it as "permission to demonize their own press."

Conway tried to deflect by saying "that didn't happen in the last 20 months, as you full well know."

"But it has got worse in the last few months," Amanpour said. "And people are using the 'fake news' slogan to justify the unprecedented amount of imprisonment and violence directed towards journalists."

Conway's response? "I see things every single day that are just not true." She tried to differentiate between journalists like Amanpour and "people who call themselves reporters because they sit on Twitter all day seeing who wrote what, and then they repeat it, even though they don't independently research it themselves."

But Trump routinely denigrates journalists from CNN and other major news outlets. "It's not just the Twitteratti," Amanpour said.

She asked Conway, "Do you think the president might take a stance of his own, to pull back from this?" To pull back from the daily derision of the press?

Conway's deflections seemed like her way of saying "no, he won't."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 895229

Reported Deaths: 9462
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1749772017
Ramsey722701040
Dakota66032572
Anoka62513568
Washington39357355
Stearns32821275
St. Louis28761399
Wright25354211
Scott25329181
Olmsted21750127
Sherburne18478126
Carver1629166
Clay11923103
Blue Earth1126366
Rice11234138
Crow Wing11003122
Chisago974676
Kandiyohi9660106
Otter Tail9611126
Benton8815124
Beltrami801794
Goodhue786596
Douglas7689100
Itasca752796
Mower721349
Winona702756
McLeod694483
Isanti681383
Steele669431
Morrison663479
Becker620873
Polk591684
Freeborn550846
Carlton529474
Nobles521654
Lyon518761
Mille Lacs516573
Nicollet510960
Pine500641
Cass491252
Todd483642
Brown465057
Le Sueur445933
Meeker422357
Martin378143
Wabasha366010
Waseca365132
Dodge351511
Hubbard349848
Roseau307931
Fillmore299115
Wadena298239
Redwood277845
Houston266817
Renville264151
Faribault253032
Pennington247529
Sibley246917
Kanabec241536
Cottonwood225032
Chippewa216342
Aitkin215850
Pope203210
Watonwan194920
Yellow Medicine185423
Rock174728
Swift169322
Koochiching168123
Stevens164511
Jackson159216
Clearwater155720
Marshall151122
Murray150911
Pipestone148329
Lake129824
Lac qui Parle120025
Wilkin119416
Mahnomen104714
Norman10389
Grant9719
Big Stone9365
Lincoln8705
Kittson71523
Red Lake70710
Traverse5996
Unassigned572124
Lake of the Woods5235
Cook3020

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 516453

Reported Deaths: 7289
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk80319799
Linn32142424
Scott26637292
Black Hawk21974378
Woodbury20490258
Johnson19778105
Dubuque18515241
Pottawattamie15890213
Dallas15320113
Story1380258
Warren8450104
Cerro Gordo7964123
Clinton7725114
Webster7326122
Des Moines7098105
Marshall669093
Muscatine6645117
Wapello6441144
Jasper619591
Sioux610177
Lee5908105
Marion557897
Buena Vista502149
Plymouth488388
Henry418655
Benton404859
Jones404862
Bremer395372
Washington391463
Boone389739
Carroll367755
Mahaska365365
Crawford353747
Dickinson314655
Jackson307747
Buchanan305741
Clay295536
Delaware294654
Kossuth289077
Fayette286353
Hardin284353
Tama279777
Page272533
Wright266149
Cedar265527
Hamilton259857
Winneshiek258143
Floyd255449
Clayton244459
Poweshiek237243
Madison234525
Harrison234379
Cass233466
Butler232744
Iowa229634
Jefferson223043
Mills220930
Winnebago215938
Hancock214639
Cherokee211347
Lyon206142
Appanoose205357
Allamakee203955
Calhoun196919
Shelby196442
Union191141
Humboldt185130
Grundy183637
Franklin183029
Mitchell182043
Chickasaw178922
Emmet178246
Louisa176953
Sac171026
Guthrie168137
Montgomery161745
Clarke160829
Keokuk150839
Palo Alto150532
Howard146824
Monroe142739
Ida130141
Greene127517
Davis124625
Lucas124426
Monona122939
Worth12139
Pocahontas120724
Adair114337
Osceola104818
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