At issue in the interview with Jake Tapper was the list produced by the Trump administration of allegedly under-covered terrorist attacks. The list was provided after Trump suggested Monday that the media was covering up certain attacks for its own, apparently nefarious reasons.
Controversial comments from Kellyanne Conway that made headlines
The problem was that the list provided included terrorist attacks that had been covered extensively — for weeks on end — such as Orlando, Paris, Brussels and San Bernardino. Tapper pressed Conway repeatedly on this point.
And Conway didn't take issue with that, crediting CNN for its extensive coverage of attacks such as the one in Paris. Instead, she suggested that the list somehow wasn't meant to be all about underreported terrorist attacks.
Here's the operative section:
TAPPER: I spent two weeks in Paris in 2015 reporting on the attacks. We also see on the screen dozens of my colleagues, Alisyn Camerota, covering the bombings in Brussels. Chris Cuomo and Anderson Cooper reporting on the super market attack in Paris. Brooke Baldwin covering the attack in Nice. Victor Blackwell reporting on the shootings in San Bernardino. Kellyanne, CNN and other media organizations cover terrorism around the world all the time. Saying that we don't cover terrorism, that's just false.CONWAY: What the President is saying there, Jake, is that there are other attacks that don't get as much coverage. Obviously the very sad incidents that you related were, frankly, CNN did amazing coverage for weeks at a time. I saw you all there on the ground doing that and telling the human interest stories and the tragic stories and frankly the involvement of the terrorists in those brutal attacks. Those get coverage. The other ones on the list, not so much. I think his point is twofold --TAPPER: Those ones were on the list. But the ones I just recited for you were on the list.CONWAY: Absolutely. And I'm saying the ones that have high casualties, like Nice and Brussels and certainly Paris and the like, those are covered extensively by all media outlets as well they should be. It's the other ones on the list....TAPPER: He was saying the media does not cover these stories because we don't want to cover them because we have some sort of agenda. That's what he was suggesting, and it's offensive given the fact that CNN and other media organizations have reporters in danger right now in war zones covering ISIS, and I just don't understand how the President can make an attack like that.CONWAY: There's no question about that. First of all, I want to tell you, I don't intend to spin. I'm crediting the coverage of CNN and your colleagues across the media gave to these high-profile and high-casualty, very sad, very vicious attacks —TAPPER: They were on the list of under-covered attacks.CONWAY: As were dozens and dozens of others.
Got it? So, in order to prove a point about the media having underreported certain terrorist attacks, the Trump White House released a list that included both under-covered and sufficiently covered terrorist attacks, and didn't distinguish between the two.
But that wasn't what was promised. Here's what White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Monday when asked to substantiate Trump's claims of the media underreporting terrorist attacks. "We’ll provide a list later. There’s several instances. … There’s a lot of instances that have occurred where I don’t think they’ve gotten the coverage it deserved.”
And then the White House provided a list that didn't prove that point at all.
This was Tapper's reaction when Conway was making the argument, after she said "absolutely."
Seems about right.