CNN's Sciutto Gets Testy After Guest Points Out Ford Story Wasn't Corroborated

October 9th, 2018 12:15 PM

CNN Newsroom hosts Jim Sciutto and Poppy Harlow tried to interrupt and combat their two right leaning guests Tuesday during a segment on the public’s opinion of Brett Kavanaugh. Sciutto even tried to trap one guest with a loaded question that put him on the spot.

The two guests were right-leaning CNN political analyst and senior columnist for The Daily Beast Matt Lewis and Washington Examiner reporter Salena Zito. Harlow began by touting their new CNN poll which revealed a slight majority, 52% polled saying they believed “the women’s” story over 48% who believed Kavanaugh’s denials. She slammed Trump for calling Kavanaugh “proven innocent,” snarking, "This wasn’t a trial. On what basis?”

Lewis argued that while President Trump’s wording may be “technically inaccurate” he was speaking to a larger point about assumption of innocence when there is no evidence to back up a claim:

“We don't know what happened all those many years ago. There was not evidence to support the claim. We can say that. That's different from being ‘proven innocent,’” Lewis argued.

Sciutto pushed back, suggesting there was evidence, and tried to trap him into calling Ford a “liar:”

Matt, you said there wasn't any evidence. I suppose you could argue there was no irrefutable evidence. But are you saying that Dr. Ford and her testimony, who even the president called -- which the president called credible, are you saying that she's been proven to be wrong or a liar here?

Lewis defended what he said, reiterating that “there was no evidence to corroborate her allegation.”

Sciutto let it go, moving on to ask Zito about the media’s latest narrative that “angry women” were going to vote against Republicans in this upcoming election:

Where does this leave the Republican party as we are four weeks out from the midterms? We know the party already had a deficit with women, particularly suburban women and that’s show in a lot of provisional elections in the last year…

But Zito didn’t respond how CNN wanted her to.

“Much better than it did ten days ago. Republican enthusiasm is up,” she began to explain before Sciutto cut in to basically tell her she gave the wrong answer:

“How is it better? I was asking specifically about women. That's not in these numbers. Enthusiasm in the party, but not among women voters,” Sciutto scolded. Zito explained that polls aren’t showing that (surprise) women don’t vote as one cohesive group, and shockingly have different opinions depending on their education, and where they live, for example.

Moving on to another media-drummed up Kavanaugh “controversy,” Harlow worried for the “impartiality” of the Supreme Court. Lewis answered that for Republicans, partisanship started with nominee Robert Bork.

“[T]he effort, even though he was highly qualified in experience, they attacked him in ideology,” Lewis began before again being cut off by an argumentative Sciutto.

“They questioned his ideology. And he had positions. Is that attacking based on that ideology, to question a Supreme Court Justice?” Sciutto defended the Democrats.

Lewis rightly pointed out that this wasn’t the standard before Bork. “There had been the assumption that if you were nominated, you were experienced. You were qualified. That your ideas wouldn't disqualify you...” he stated.