In the wake of revelations from 18 taped interviews between investigative journalist Bob Woodward and President Donald Trump, the GOP members of Congress who adamantly support the POTUS are being asked for their thoughts. One such major Trump fan is Louisiana Republican Senator John Kennedy.
CNN's Pamela Brown interviewed Kennedy on Wednesday.
"Senator, President Trump told Bob Woodward the first week of February that he knew the [pandemic] could be spread through the air and that it was more deadly than the flu, but two weeks later he said at a rally that [the pandemic] was the Democrats' new hoax."
"Is that acceptable to you? Is that misleading the public?"
"All I can do is share with you my point of view, Pamela. These gotcha books don't really interest me that much—"
"He's on the record."
Kennedy again said:
"These gotcha books don't really interest me that much. There will be a new one out tomorrow."
"But this is different. He did eighteen interviews with Bob Woodward."
Kennedy acknowledged Brown was "right" before she elaborated further.
"He's recorded. You hear his voice. And you're seeing that and you're contrasting that with what he says to the public."
"Wouldn't that be something of interest to you as a United States Senator?"
Kennedy would not be taken off script however.
"Let me answer you again. These gotcha books don't really interest me. There will be a new one out tomorrow."
The Senator did add he felt the White House always took the pandemic seriously so Brown tried again.
"But the bottom line is [the POTUS] told Bob Woodward privately that this was a deadly virus and that it was airborne."
"Didn't the public, didn't the citizens in your home state of Louisiana deserve to know that as well so that they could change their behavior appropriately to protect themselves?"
Kennedy then tried to deflect by blaming Washington.
"Well, No. 1, Pamela, I'm not going to repeat what I just said. But all I can tell you is what my personal experience has been."
"No. 2, let me say a word about this infatuation in Washington with who said what to whom. I learned pretty quickly up here—"
Brown cut off Kennedy's deflection again.
"No, Senator, I'm sorry. I'm not going to let you do this."
"I understand there is so much politics right now, we're two months away from an election. But this is life and death."
"You had 5,000 people that have died in Louisiana from [the pandemic]. Republicans are reluctant, as you are now, to ever criticize this President."
"But as a human being, how can you be okay with this?"
Brown was not alone in wanting a straight answer from a member of the GOP.
Others took exception with Kennedy himself.
Kennedy found a more accommodating audience for his "these gotcha books" response when he repeated it on Fox News.
Kennedy was elected in 2016 after several unsuccessful senatorial campaigns. His term will end in January 2023.