In Lengthy CNN Interview, Scaramucci Says 'Fish Stinks From the Head Down,' But Won't Say Who the Fish Is
White House Director of Communications Anthony Scaramucci called into CNN's “New Day” on Thursday morning to touch on the subject of a now-deleted tweet in which he seemingly accused Reince Priebus of being the White House leaker.
The interview — which spanned well over 25 minutes — saw Scaramucci giving a long monologue before engaging in an equally lengthy back-and-forth with host Chris Cuomo.
The communications director started by saying he wanted to “reset at zero” and that “the president also told me, if you're nice to me in this segment, he'll let me come back on the show.”
He then began this speech, saying that he's interviewed most of the people in the White House and that “the president and I would like to tell everybody, we have a very, very good idea of who the leakers are, who the senior leakers are in the White House.” He also implied that they are working toward taking legal action against the alleged leakers.
From there, Scaramucci touched on his relationship with the president:
“He knows I'm his friend first, Chris. You're from New York, I'm from New York, the president is from New York. We had dinner last night. I sat next to the first lady. I love the president. I said that. I know the press wants to ridicule me for saying it six times from the podium. We started out as friends.”
He then touched on the fact that he finds it “absolutely, completely and totally reprehensible” that he can't have dinner with the president, first lady, and Fox News's Sean Hannity without it being leaked to the press “seven minutes later.”
“As you know from the Italian expression, the fish stinks from the head down,” Scaramucci said. “I can tell you two fish that don't stink. That's me and the president.”
Scaramucci then made his way to the subject of Priebus.
“If you want to talk about the chief of staff, we have had odds,” he said. “We have had differences. When I said we were brothers from the podium, that's because we're — some brothers are like Cain and Abel.”
He would continue to talk about his deleted tweet from last night:
"He's the chief of staff. He's responsible for understanding and uncovering and helping me do that in the White House, which is why I put the tweet out last night. When the journalists who know who the leakers are like Ryan Lizza, these guys know who the leakers are. I respect him for not telling me because I understand journalistic integrity.
However, when I put out a tweet, I put Reince's name in a tweet, they make the assumption it's him because journalists know who the leakers are. If Reince wants to explain he's not a leaker, let him do that. Let me tell you about myself."
Following Scaramucci's speech, he would then launch into an extended — and often heated — exchange with Cuomo.