Nicolle Wallace had Chris Christie on for a lengthy interview yesterday. But unlike many of the other people who featured Christie in the past two days, she addressed the shortcomings of his new book.
"You take on the media and I'm in the media, I read that section carefully. The book is called, it's about conspiracies and lies and you really don't take on Fox News. Why not? Have you seen Tucker Carlson's program?
"I don't watch it," he said.
"Are you aware of what he does?" she asked.
"It's a book with truth denier, conspiracy theorists on the cover and you attack CNN, the New York Times and MSNBC." (The book is called "Republican Rescue: Saving the Party from Truth Deniers, Conspiracy Theorists, and the Dangerous Policies of Joe Biden.")
"I talk about bias."
"Is bias more dangerous to the country than conspiracy theorists?"
"No, but that's the third section of the book where I talk about the movement forward. In the center portion of the book, we talk about the conspiracy theories and the truth denying that went on with things like Qanon, Pizzagate, the election situation. John Birch Society. That's what I talk about. These two sections of the book, I'm sure accidentally you're conflating them."
"I don't think it's an honest -- I don't think it's a conspiracy theory taking on Fox News."
"Listen, then you can write that in your book."
"I'm not trying to rescue the Republican party."
"Whatever you want to write about, you can write about that."
"What's your relationship with Fox News going to be if you were president?"
He went through the whole "I haven't decided" tapdance. Blah blah blah. Wallace plowed on.
"Do you think Fox News in prime time is good for the country or bad?"
"Listen, there are shows I like in Fox News and shows I don't like. Like there are shows I like here."
"Are you afraid to question the purveyors of conspiracy theories and lies?"
"That's your opinion. You are welcome to your opinion like everybody else. I don't consider people like Sean Hannity or Laura Ingraham 'purveyors.' "
(Pause here to laugh. You know you want to!)
"I didn't say any names of correspondents other than Tucker Carlson. The 8pm hour."
"I told you, I don't watch the show. I don't know what Tucker does from night to night. If I watch anything at night in news, 'cause most of the time I'm watching sports, anything in news, I'm usually watching either Sean or Laura."
(And I'm sure no one has ever described Tucker Carlson's show to you, right, Chris?)
"So you may or may not support Donald Trump in 2024. You may or may not run for president. And a book about liars and conspiracy theorists doesn't have anything to say about Fox News?"
"The book talks about. You continue to conflate it."
"I don't know how you talk about liars and conspiracy theorists without talking about Fox News, I was a Republican, I think they've done more damage to the party than anything else."
"I'm sure you do. I think there are liars and conspiracy theorists on MSNBC and CNN also. So maybe I'll write a book about all that. That's not what the book is about. In that section of the book, I'm talking to Republicans about the way we need to deal with media to be most effective for winning. The conspiracy theorists and truth deniers, which nobody else on either side of the aisle is writing about right now other than me. No one else is writing about that."
"But you want to solve the conspiracy theories without dealing with Fox News, it's like solving terrorism without dealing with the terrorists.
"That's your opinion. I disagree with your opinion. I think it's irresponsible, Nicolle, to analogize Fox News to terrorists."
She did a pretty good job on showing Chris Christie for the slippery weasel he is. That's the way to pin people down.