Republicans need every Senate vote they can get if they want to have any chance of passing pet agenda items like tax cuts that benefit the very wealthy. They were sent into panic mode recently when a sure-thing special election win to replace Jeff Sessions’ former Senate seat representing Alabama suddenly became a toss-up.
The party’s controversial nominee Roy Moore was hit with allegations from four women claiming that he had sexual encounters with them when he was in his 30’s and they were teenagers. Republicans have, of course, rushed to try and discredit these women and their allegations. When ABC’s Martha Raddatz brought White House counselor Kellyanne Conway onto her show to discuss the troubling situation for Republicans, Martha blasted Kellyanne for not admitting that she believed these women’s stories.
On her show This Week, Raddatz asked Conway point blank if she had “any doubt about the veracity” of what the four women had accused Moore of doing. Kellyanne punted by replying very generally and noncommitally, “The conduct described should disqualify anyone from serving in public office and I’ll stand by that. The president and others in the Republican Party have made clear that if the allegations are true, this man should step aside. But I’ve gone farther than that.” Pressed Martha, “But that goes back to that ‘if’, ‘if we prove this misconduct, then he should leave.’ What is it that has to happen now for you to go into, ‘He should step aside’?” Kellyanne then ducked the question completely, stating that “the president is not as focused on this as he is his major 14-day trip abroad.”
This did not satisfy Martha, and she cut her off, saying, “Let me ask you again. Do you have any doubt about the veracity of the accusations.” Answered Kellyanne, “I only know what I read. And I take very seriously allegations like this, particularly when they involve someone who happens to be one of my daughter’s age.” She then pivoted, saying, “I also want to make sure that we as a nation are not always prosecuting people through the press.” Raddatz pressed yet again, trying to nail down an actual answer to her question, “What is your standard of proof? I mean, you either believe the women or you don’t.” Conway ended up replying, still in slippery, hypothetical terms, “He should step aside if the allegations are true.” Fired back Martha, “If, if, if! Where does the if lie?” Trump’s counselor replied, “If the allegations are true, then he should step aside.” She then pivoted again, declaring, “And if the allegations are true about a lot of people then they should step aside.” Doubled down the ABC host, “Let me say again, there are four women who were named. And 30 women coroborating it.” Stated Kellyanne, snidely, “And they should have their day and they should speak up.” Shot back Raddatz, “I think they did speak up.” Are you glad Martha handled sneaky Kellyanne so deftly? Watch the full exchange below: