ABC Host Reveals Major Red Flag He Missed In 2016 Trump Interview Meltdown
ABC’s George Stephanopoulos recalled a 2016 incident with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump that should’ve been the “biggest tell in the world” for what would come in the following years.
During an interview Wednesday on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” Stephanopoulos looked back on an interview he did with Trump in Colorado during the 2016 campaign.
“We started to talk, and I asked him a question about ― remember this gold star mother, the Muslim woman whose son was killed ― and he attacked her,” he said. “And he just went after her. And I was, like, I guess the interview’s over. He just ended his campaign.”
“But we kept on going,” he said, “and I started to ask him about his relationship with Vladimir Putin, which he never gave a straight answer to.”
“So I asked him about three or four times just, you know, just tell us what the relationship was. And I was just asking factual questions.”
He said Trump ended the interview, walked out the door and called over a producer.
“And I could hear the yelling in the hallway,” Stephanopoulos said, recalling that Trump then sent his communications director, Hope Hicks, back into the interview room to “get me and walk me into the hall.”
“And then he started yelling at me, going on and on and on and on and on. Because I asked him about Vladimir Putin. Which should have been the biggest tell in the world back in 2016,” he said.
Trump’s behavior in that interview ― lashing out at a journalist for asking questions that he didn’t want to answer ― was indicative of many future exchanges to come. Trump continued to berate, insult and undermine the press throughout his presidency, particularly when he was asked difficult questions.
Trump also continued to show deference to Putin and other dictators throughout his presidency and afterward. Multiple investigations found that Russia worked to help Trump’s campaign and hurt his Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton. Several top Trump advisers were convicted of felonies in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election.
New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman reported on Stephanopoulos’ interview incident in her new book. According to her reporting, Trump screamed expletives at ABC producer John Santucci, complaining that Stephanopoulos asked “eight fucking follow-ups” about Russia.
“It’s like asking me if I beat my wife,” Trump reportedly shouted. “You ask me once, I say ‘fuck no,’ and we move on. You don’t then ask if I hit her with a fucking baseball bat or a fucking golf club! That was bullshit and you better fucking fix it in the edit.’”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.