The bruising on-air battle between Trump policy advisor Stephen Miller and CNN’s Jake Tapper came to an abrupt end when Tapper finally shut off his guest’s mic, saying, “I’ve wasted enough of my viewers’ time” (video below). But it turns out that wasn’t the end of the conversation; the fireworks continued off-air.
Amid reports alleging that CNN was forced to escort Miller off the set, a transcript of Miller and Tapper’s off-air exchange has now emerged. According to the transcript, following the heated interview on “State of the Union” Sunday, Miller continued to press Tapper about getting more airtime, but the anchor was having none of it.
“Jake, what I care about is having three minutes to tell the truth about the President of the United States,” said Miller.
“You had plenty of time,” replied Tapper. “I let you give like a three-minute filibuster at the very top.”
“You gave me two minutes,” said Miller.
“Stephen. Okay. Thanks for coming,” said Tapper, clearly done with the conversation.
“You should be ashamed of yourself, honestly,” Miller said.
“This is the reason they don’t put you out on TV, okay. This is the reason,” Tapper fired back.
“No, Jake, you brought me on to talk about the Camp David summit— ,” Miller began.
“First of all, I had plenty of questions about immigration, but you kept telling the same story over and over,” said Tapper.
After the two go back and forth about whether Tapper offered him enough time and Miller’s “filibustering,” Tapper told Miller to “stop acting offended” after he “spent the entire interview attacking CNN.”
“I’m not acting offended. I am offended,” said Miller. “I’m offended by you, and I’m offended by your network.”
According to a Fox News source inside CNN, while Miller was then escorted off the set, it was not quite as dramatic as some reports suggested. A production team member walked Miller off the set because it was a “live set,” the source said; he was not exactly being “thrown out.”
Fox provides a summary of how the exaggerated report began:
Business Insider reported on Sunday that Miller refused to leave and had to be escorted off the set. CNN did not offer a public statement about the incident, but a staffer confirmed the events on background to a CBS reporter who used the information like it was an official statement, prompting a CNN public relations vice president to head to Twitter to clarify.
“This is not a statement from CNN. We did not issue a statement,” CNN’s Matt Dornic wrote. “You need to correct… I don’t know your source. But we did not issue any such statement.”
Here’s the full combative interview:
As for Trump’s reaction to the on-air exchange, which revolved around Miller denouncing Michael Wolff’s “salacious” book and Trump’s former strategist Steve Bannon: the president loved it. Here’s what he tweeted in response: