Bonchie wrote earlier about how Principled Journalist™ Jake Tapper got wrecked today courtesy of Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.) after he reaffirmed in a recent New York Times podcast how he wouldn’t book any GOP guests who he proclaimed participated in the so-called “Big Lie” about the 2020 presidential election.
For those who missed it, Stefanik included a screengrab of Tapper’s claim (which was reported by Politico) in a tweet she posted that included receipts of just a few of the times Tapper’s handlers have emailed to invite her on to his program:
Shot….. chaser, chaser, chaser
Drink up, @jaketapper! 😂 You'll need it with your plummeting ratings!
— Elise Stefanik (@EliseStefanik) June 4, 2021
However, instead of owning up to his lie, Tapper proceeded to throw his “excellent bookers” (producers) under the bus in an attempt to absolve himself of any responsibility:
I can’t account for every email from my excellent bookers whose job it is to present me with as many options as possible. I have just refused to allow any of the Liars, such as Rep Stefanik, on air. Kind of stunning to see her proudly identify as a conspiracy theorist. https://t.co/Whn3KiwEFQ
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) June 4, 2021
I’m going to unpack Tapper’s answer in just a minute, but for good measure, Kara Swisher, the podcast host who interviewed Tapper for the quote that was featured in Politico, tried to white knight for him by alleging Stefanik took him out of context.
Stefanik “is woefully inaccurate here to what @jaketapper actually said to me,” Swisher tweeted, “and it’s not the giant gotcha she is touting. Here’s the actual transcript”:
“Now if they came to me and said that they wanted to, I don’t think any of them, Scalise or McCarthy or Stefanik have faced a tough interview at all about it. So I might be willing to interview one of them to talk about this, to talk about their election lies and what they’re doing. But I’m not asking for the interview and they’re not eager to do it.”
Tapper’s lame response and Swisher’s attempt at rescuing him actually made him look like even more of a liar, as former CNN producer Steve Krakauer explained in much gentler terms:
Your “senior planning producer” says “happy to get her on the phone with Jake prior to committing.” What’s that – to see if she’s game to comment on “the insurrection”? She’s trying to convince Stefanik’s team to get her on your show.
— Steve Krakauer (@SteveKrak) June 4, 2021
The idea that Tapper’s staff would try 3 different times to book Stefanik, including floating putting Tapper on the phone with her before the interview, does not match up with the way he described considering talking to her if SHE requested it. It’s completely incongruous.
— Steve Krakauer (@SteveKrak) June 4, 2021
Bingo. Not only that, but did you catch how Tapper also dishonestly claimed that it was “Kind of stunning to see her proudly identify as a conspiracy theorist”? Calling that “dishonest” is actually putting it mildly, considering she directly responded to what Tapper said because her name was mentioned in the Politico piece she referenced.
Not surprisingly, this bogus line of attack was echoed by Brian Stelter-wannabe Justin Baragona of the Daily Beast, who donned his clown suit in trying to defend Tapper as well. Yours truly called him out on it:
This is such a f*cking dishonest attack. She "admitted" no such thing. Stefanik's name was specifically mentioned in the Politico piece she responded to, you hack. Why can't you be honest for five seconds, Justin? https://t.co/EwUsHzzbh7
— Sister Toldjah 😁 (@sistertoldjah) June 4, 2021
Other Twitter users, too, were in no mood to let Tapper pretend to be the one with the moral high ground:
How many times have you had Hillary Clinton on your show? Schiff? Swalwell? These are just a few of the liars who told us the 2016 election was fraudulent and stolen. Sit the F right down. https://t.co/XFIzWsc400
— Lhop (@Lhop963) June 4, 2021
— LaurieAnn 🧚🏻♂️💫 (@mooshakins) June 4, 2021
— MattFromFlorida (@MattFromFlorid1) June 4, 2021
jake, what is this about? https://t.co/jO9jpLurqC
— Ryan (@alwaysonoffense) June 4, 2021
In other words, Jake Tapper is more than openly accommodating to guests who make controversial claims long as they’re pushing the “correct” kind of (false) media narratives, in fact inviting them on his show frequently. But GOP guests who have concerns about election integrity are held to far different standards for no other reason than their party affiliation and because they have been defenders of former President Trump over the years.
All of this is rather amusing when you think about it. I mean here Tapper is telling Trump and Republican leaders to admit defeat, and yet when it comes to admitting that he told a whopper on the podcast, he refuses to take the “L” himself (and this is by no means the first time this has happened).
Moral of the story? If a reporter feels the need to routinely brag about how “principled” they are (while occasionally throwing some faux self-deprecation in the mix so it sounds convincing), there’s a good chance they’re not. Then again, we’ve been there, done that, got the t-shirt with Tapper many times before, haven’t we?