I’ve been trying to figure out what Kellyanne Conway does for a living. Apparently others are having the same problem. One of those might be Alisyn Camerota, who anchors New Day for CNN. On Friday (23 June) Camerota interviewed presidential advisor Conway and brought up the matter of Russian meddling in the 2016 election plus any subsequent hocus pocus. It was an odd interview, and I pulled up a transcript from CNN, part of which follows:
CAMEROTA: Joining us now, we want to get to the counselor to President Trump, Kellyanne Conway. Good morning, Kellyanne.
KELLYANNE CONWAY, COUNSELOR TO PRESIDENT TRUMP: Good morning, Alisyn.
CAMEROTA: Thanks so much for being with us. This is a busy day.
CONWAY: My pleasure.
CAMEROTA: As it always is, lots of breaking news. I want to ask you about Adam Entous’s reporting that he just shared from “The Washington Post” that this goes the furthest we’ve seen to connecting President Putin of Russia to actually giving the directive to interfere in the U.S. election and to try to hurt Hillary Clinton. What’s the White House’s response to this?
CONWAY: Well, the president has said previously, and we’ve got confirmation now from Jeh Johnson, from Adam Schiff, from Dan Coats, from Jim Comey, from Mike Rogers, that there’s no evidence of collusion, number one. And number two, that this doesn’t have an impact on the electoral result. And I think it’s very important to show no nexus has been proven between what Russia or any other foreign government tried to do and the actual election result. The only person making that case prominently is Hillary Clinton. And you have everything saying that there is no nexus, that not a single vote changed, and we’re going to stand by that. We know Donald Trump won fairly and squarely, 306 electoral votes, and it had nothing to do with interference.
CAMEROTA: We know that as well. But what about this new reporting that there are three dozen high-level officials that say they can connect President Putin with giving instructions to hack the DNC computers and to plant fake stories? What is the current White House doing about this?
CONWAY: Well, Alisyn, the president has said previously, and he stands by that, particularly as president-elect, that he would be concerned about anybody interfering in our democracy. We saw a lot of people interfering with our democracy by saying he couldn’t win here at home.
But I really am struck by former homeland security secretary Jeh Johnson’s testimony earlier this week which you covered extensively where he seemed very frustrated the DNC refused the help of the DHS because DHS knew that the DNC was vulnerable. The RNC I’m sure was vulnerable but had those safeguards and protections in place and had a different result. And so it’s very clear that even the Obama administration, there was concern. There were actions trying to be taken. But the question for the DNC is, why were you so arrogant in not letting the homeland security of your own administration help you?
CAMEROTA: That’s fine. But my question for you is, what is the White House, what is President Trump now doing from preventing Russia from doing this again?
CONWAY: This report is new and we’ll discuss it with him later. But he’s been very clear on the record he believes in any tie of numbers of measures to make sure that democracy flourishes and that our voter integrity intact.
CAMEROTA: Such as — I mean, against Russia what is he doing specifically to try to stop this?
CONWAY: Alisyn, I realize that we just like to say the word “Russia, Russia” to mislead the voters. And I know that CNN is aiding and abating this nonsense as well. —
CAMEROTA: Kellyanne —
CONWAY: You’ve asked me the same question three times now —
CAMEROTA: You’re not answering it, Kellyanne.
CONWAY: Yes I am.
CAMEROTA: And what’s he doing?
CONWAY: He has said, he has said very clearly that he wants the voter integrity and the ballot integrity to be protected.
CAMEROTA: And what action is he taking?
CONWAY: — any type of interference — at this very moment, at this very second?
CONWAY: Oh, yes, because we have nothing to say about Russian collusion affecting the electoral outcome. Those rabbit holes did not bear fruit.
CAMEROTA: Kellyanne, I don’t understand what you’re trying to do talking about collusion.
CONWAY: I’ve answered the question four times.
CAMEROTA: What action is the White House doing to stop Russian interference in elections?
CONWAY: The White House, the president has met with his national security team many times. He has an initiative on a commission on voter integrity, and he himself has used the power of the bully pulpit to express his resistance towards any type of outside interference. So again, I’ve answered the question several times in an ongoing process. You’re dealing with a very new report. So we will look at that as well as we do all —
CAMEROTA: Yes, fair enough. This is a new report. But the idea Russia interfered has been obviously around since now we know before the election.
CONWAY: Yes. Jeh Johnson seemed very frustrated with his own DNC about it. I agree with you.
[08:10:00] CAMEROTA: And in fact said there was great concern that if they did anything openly that they would challenge the integrity of the election process itself. And, look, you’ve heard from this new report that President Obama was afraid that — that Vladimir Putin would up the ante, would ratchet it up. But I understand. You haven’t read the report yet. That’s fine this morning. But, still, this has been going on for months. So the president talking about it, do you think that he’s done enough to sending a signal to Russia to stop this?
CONWAY: I think the president has been very clear on how he feels about this issue and many others. Do you know, Alisyn, he also has a full roster. I know CNN and others don’t want to cover it. He just last week opened up a $100 million investment in apprenticeship programs. And 90 percent of people who go through these skills, certification apprentice programs are employed in short order with an average of $60,000 salary. Where is the reporting on that? This week just back here, Secretary Price and I met with Obamacare victims. They’re real. They’re suffering. They’ve been left behind out of the Affordable Care Act. If you want the information, I’ll provide it you can interview them.
CAMEROTA: I think that, Kellyanne —
CONWAY: The markets love this presidency. There’s so much real people impact happening here that doesn’t get covered on the altar of Russia.
CAMEROTA: Kellyanne, I think that a lot of people think that Russia trying to interfere in our democracy is a big story.
CONWAY: It is, but there are other stories. And I know we’re all capable of covering many of them. You have a 24/7 cable news outlet that certainly can fill lots of are content. I’m giving you great story ideas because we hear from people every day. They want him, and certainly in these special elections, people rejected this Russia obsession because they like the fact there’s job creation, regulation is being rolled back, health care is —
CAMEROTA: Yes, we do cover, obviously, the jobs report, Kellyanne. And I know everyone’s a producer and everybody has ideas of what CNN should cover. But Kellyanne, I think that —
CONWAY: We’re helping.
CAMEROTA: Thank you — is that the president has not given a terribly full-throated announcement that he believes that Russia interfered. He says things like, they may have. It may have been China.
CONWAY: Alisyn, so we’re just asking, we’re having the same conversation through six different semantic differences. That’s fine. It’s your show. You can ask me what you want. But I will just remind you as politely as I can that this entire conversation was irrelevant to voters in these four special elections. Everybody tried hard as they could to make it something other than job creation, rollback of draconian, byzantine regulations, the unleashing of entrepreneurship, including if these small business owners, and I was one for over 20 years, gets a 15 percent to 20 percent tax bracket. That will be monumentally transformative in our country’s economy. This is important things that people want to focus on. Yesterday the Senate released their health care legislation.
Camerota: Good morning Kellyanne. Who does your hair?
Conway: President Trump is the best since Abraham Lincoln.
Camerota: Enough with the pleasantries. Does the President have plans to do something about current and future meddling by the Russians?
Conway: I like your shoes.
Camerota: Thanks, Kellyanne, but you didn’t answer my question. Does the President have a plan?
Conway: Alisyn, you’re getting snippy.
Camerota: About the Russians. Does President Trump plan to deal with this matter.
Conway: Jobs, jobs, jobs.
Conway: Alisyn, bitch. I have already answer that question four times.
[At this point Conway seems to have lost count. By my count she has answered that question zero times.]
Conway: We won, and you losers lost. How about all of you go suck an egg.