An official from President Trump's campaign was called out live on the air by one CNN anchor for "doing a real disservice" to Americans.
CNN's Brianna Keilar spoke to Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh on Tuesday afternoon in what turned out to be quite a heated conversation. Early on she blasted him for "lying" about the national stockpile and went on to describe the administration's "failure" on COVID-19 testing.
Keilar continued to fact-check Murtaugh throughout the conversation, which went even more off the rails after the topic turned to hydroxychloroquine, the malaria drug Trump has pushed as a potential treatment for COVID-19.
"It kills people, Tim," Keilar told Murtaugh.
But as Murtaugh defended hydroxychloroquine and wondered "how dangerous could it possibly be," Keilar grew more frustrated and eventually ended the discussion after telling Murtaugh he's doing "a real disservice to the health of Americans."
"Tim, we are done with this conversation," Keilar said. "I think that you're just really confusing the situation, and it does no service to anyone's health."
Without so much as a commercial break, Keilar immediately turned to an expert on the subject, Dr. James Phillips, to respond to what viewers heard from Murtaugh and to clarify that hydroxychloroquine hasn't been proven to be safe or effective in treating COVID-19 and that it can lead to "serious" illness.
"What was just recently said was irresponsible, and being said for political reasons, and I completely disagree with it," Phillips said.
"I think you're doing a real disservice to Americans."@brikeilarcnn clashes with Trump Campaign Comms. Dir. Tim Murtaugh over the President's Covid-19 response, cutting the interview short as the guest pushes the validity of hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus treatment. pic.twitter.com/VzxtDZCv80
- CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) July 21, 2020
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