August 7, 2016

CNN commentator Angela Rye could not help but laugh on Sunday as Rudy Giuliani tried to downplay Donald Trump's business ties to Russian oligarchs.

During a weekend discussion on CNN, Rye defended a Clinton campaign ad suggesting that Trump's taxes could be hiding connections to Russia.

"They do have this DNC email hack," Rye said, noting that experts had said the hackers were from Russia. "What is Russia's interest in this election if not to destroy the Democratic Party or to try to tear it apart... but they haven't done the same thing with the RNC so it is highly questionable."

"There also seems to be the this love affair with Putin and Trump," she continued. "They are constantly complimenting one another. And I think that a reasonable person would ask questions."

Giuliani charged that Clinton had allowed Russian President Vladimir Putin to have the upper hand "all over the globe."

"What about clarity from Donald Trump, Mr. Mayor, about any connections to Russia?" CNN's Victor Blackwell asked.

"Donald Trump has no substantial connections to Russia," Giuliani insisted.

Rye couldn't help but laugh as she repeated Giuliani's line under her breath: "No substantial"

"I don't know his business in great detail but I know it fairly well," the former mayor continued. "He has no substantial connections to Russia."

Rye giggled at the repeated use of the word "substantial."

"The reality is your taxes wouldn't tell you whether or not you have investments from Russia," Giuliani said. "There are a lot of Russians who are anti-Putin who have invested in the United States. I happen to represent some of them."

"That's why it's a ridiculous ad," he added. "It shows a complete lack of knowledge of how Russia operates. It is this administration that has allowed Russia to push around the world."

Clearly amused by Giuliani, Rye concluded that his complicated defense of Trump's ties to Russia proved that the Clinton campaign had created "a great ad."

"If it takes you this long to explain it," she quipped, "you've got a challenge on your hands."

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