CNN Host Hammers Former Pence Spokesman: Trump Slapped the 'Entire US Intelligence Community in the Face'

An interview with Vice President Mike Pence's former spokesperson Marc Lotter went off the rails as anchor Poppy Harlow called him out on-air for refusing to answer her question and repeating lines from a White House talking points sheet.

Harlow asked Lotter to defend Pence's glowing statement about Trump's meeting with Putin, which was widely panned across the political spectrum.

"Mark, then what did America gain yesterday? Name one thing for me gained yesterday by the president essentially slapping the entire U.S. intelligence community in the face." Harlow asked.

Lotter attemped to redirect the conversation.

"I will remind you, the president has said on multiple occasions that he agrees that he thinks Russia did meddle in the election," Lotter responded before having his deflection shot down.

"Except I'm reminding you of what the president said yesterday. He didn't say that. He did not say that yesterday [...] Not once did he back them up yesterday. Help me understand what America gained yesterday from the president," Harlow countered.

Lotter continued refusing to address the issue and tried again to confuse the audience with unrelated information. Harlow called his bluff.

"You are speaking right along the lines of the White House talking points that were sent out last night that Jim Acosta got," Harlow said.

The conversation continued with Lotter suggesting Russia didn't change the election outcome.

"Hold on. Just to be clear, I want clarity. You are comfortable with Russia interfering in our election and attacking our democracy? That sits okay with you?" Harlow asked.

Lotter attempted to downgrade the Russian intelligence operation against the U.S. by calling it an "influence campaign" and laughably suggested the Trump administration has taken action to prevent future interference.

Watch the full exchange below.

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

alternet logo

Tough Times

Demand honest news. Help support AlterNet and our mission to keep you informed during this crisis.