The White House spox was discussing the Mueller report when Cooper mentioned the president “tried to get Rod Rosenstein to lie,” about the origins of former FBI Director James Comey’s firing.
In between a back-and-forth tiff with Gidley, Cooper tried to extract the truth from the deputy press secretary blasting the notion the president was completely honest:
“I’m just surprised because this is the first time we’ve learned about it, that the president of the United States actually asked Rod Rosenstein to hold a press conference and lie and the White House press office also was pushing that and Reince Priebus was screaming at some flack over the Department of Justice to get Rod Rosenstein out in front of a camera so the guy could lie. I mean, that’s normal behavior?”
Watch the video below:
CNN's @AndersonCooper: "Did the President lie? Did the President lie?"
Hogan Gidley: "No, I'm not aware of him lying. He hasn't lied to me."
— Anderson Cooper 360° (@AC360) April 19, 2019
As Gidley continued to beat around the bush on Cooper’s questions about the president’s deception, the host pled for an “actual honest answer.”
“Did the president lie? Did the president lie? Did the president lie?” Cooper repeatedly asked until Gidley would address the question.
“No, I’m not aware of him lying,” the spox staunchly claimed. “He hasn’t lied to me.”
“You’re not aware of the president of the United States lying?” Cooper quickly rebutted. “If I had a boss who lied as routinely, I would have the guts to say he lied.”
“I feel bad that you’re scared to say that your boss lied,” he added. “I would not work in that situation.”
Gidley also defended White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders for her statements on Comey’s firing that were “not founded on anything,” arguing that she is allowed to have a “slip of the tongue.”