White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and her father, former Arkansas Governor and conservative pundit Mike Huckabee, clashed with The View hosts on Wednesday over a host of issues relating to President Donald Trump — including the role of media.
“Is the media not supposed to report on the fact that 95 percent of what he says is a lie?” asked co-host Joy Behar of Huckabee Sanders, after the press secretary claimed she hoped the media would get back to a more balanced approach to covering the president.
As the crowd applauded, Huckabee Sanders replied, “The problem with that, Joy, is you are doing exactly what we’re talking about — and pushing a false narrative.” (It’s unclear what specific statistic Behar was citing, but according to Politifact, Trump has made 309 mostly false, false, or “pants on fire” statements.)
“I feel for you,” Behar said to Huckabee Sanders. “I feel sorry for you that you have to go out and defend those lies every day.”
Asked what Huckabee Sanders would say to the American people when faced with Trump’s false claims, the Press Secretary replied, “I completely disagree with what you’re saying — that only five percent is true. I know that is simply not accurate and I think that is one of the dangers we have right now is that we’re pushing so many false narratives every day. We’re creating false perceptions about the president and, frankly, inhibiting his ability to succeed. I think America should want him to succeed. He is the president whether they voted him or not. … His success is America’s success.”
Co-host Whoopi Goldberg agreed with that sentiment, but responded, “You also have to get somebody in the office who recognizes what the truth is.” She then asked Huckabee Sanders if the Trump official could answer where President Barack Obama was born and if he is a citizen. (Trump infamously pushed the false claim of a birther conspiracy against Obama over the last eight years.)
As for Huckabee, he was asked about Trump’s controversial pardoning of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, “arguably one of the most racist and racially-profiling officials in our country,” on the eve of Hurricane Harvey striking Texas.
“I know Joe Arpaio. I do not agree he is racist,” Huckabee said, drawing boos from the audience. “He’s an 85-year-old man. He has been a sheriff and he has enforced the law in his county.” Huckabee then pivoted to discuss Trump’s response to Harvey. “But what you also mentioned was this was a president who not only did the important job of stepping up federal resources to assist in Texas but then he got criticized for not showing enough empathy. He goes back, he hugs people, and then people are saying, ‘We gotta find something to hate this guy for.’ I’m just telling you, the man could take … What he did in that hurricane relief was important.”
Watch the full interview segments above.