CNN host Jake Tapper called out Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort on Sunday for making false attacks on the media to distract from his candidate's recent gaffes.
On Sunday's State of the Union program, Tapper noted that GOP nominee Donald Trump had blamed the media for creating a controversy over his "Second Amendment people" remark that many had taken as a call to assassinate his Democratic opponent, Hillary Clinton.
"Here's the thing, it wasn't just reporters," Tapper said. "It was Republicans, it was people in Washington, D.C. who want Mr. Trump to win."
"The point is most people did not interpret it that way," Manafort insisted. "It was not at all meant to be a threat. But the point again is you could have covered what he was saying or you could try and take an aside and take the Clinton narrative and play it out. You chose to do that instead."
"I mean, there's plenty of news to cover this week, but I haven't seen [it] covered," he continued, pointing to the release of emails tying State Department employees to the Clinton Foundation and bad economic news.
"Instead you took an aside that the Clinton narrative told you was something," Manafort charged. "Mr. Trump told you he didn't mean and you played it out for two days. I mean, that's what we're talking about."
"As a factual matter," Tapper interrupted, "on Monday, my show covered Mr. Trump's speech. Okay? We did. We covered Mr. Trump's speech. And we did cover those Hillary Clinton emails."
"So, these things," the CNN host said, "just because you say them, they're not true. I mean, we have been covering the substance. We have been covering things that are bad [for] Hillary Clinton."