ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl clashed with former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Sunday over House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's lies about Jan. 6.
May 1, 2022

ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl clashed with former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Sunday over House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy's lies about Jan. 6.

During a panel discussion on ABC, Christie argued that reports claiming McCarthy called for then-President Donald Trump to resign after Jan. 6 were untrue. According to Christie, McCarthy said that the resignation should only occur if the Senate had the votes to convict Trump.

But Karl insisted that the words McCarthy said about Trump had been accurately reported.

"I have to say, with all due respect, Gov. Christie, I don't think you're characterizing what was on that tape accurately," Karl said. "There's no way to listen to that tape and think that Kevin McCarthy told the truth. That tape, you hear Kevin McCarthy saying I've had it with that guy, referring to Donald Trump."

"You hear Kevin McCarthy say he's going to call Donald Trump and his recommendation would be that he resign," he insisted.

Christie disagreed but Karl refused to back down.

"It is true!" Karl said.

"That's not what he said!" Christie objected.

"Can I please finish?" Karl asked.

"No, no," Christie continued. "I've heard your point."

"He didn't say what you said," Karl pointed out.

"Yes, he did!" Christie exclaimed.

"No," Karl corrected.

"What he said what if the Senate has the votes to convict," Christie said.

"That's not a quote!" Karl observed. "That's not a quote from the tape."

"That's what the conversation was," Christie asserted.

Unable to defend his claim about McCarthy's remarks, Christie tried to change the subject.

"And look, you know who cares about this?" he asked. "You know, maybe five people in Washington, D.C. The voters across the country could care less about this. This is the rearview mirror stuff that the American people don't care about when they're paying $5 a gallon for gas, when they've got 8.5% inflation and can't buy their groceries and when there is crime all over the streets in our major cities. They just don't care, John. And that's why the story doesn't get any traction outside Washington, D.C."

"But the point is, there is a credibility issue," Karl noted. "Because these reporters... they reported what McCarthy said and it wasn't just about saying that he was going to call him and suggest he resign. It was the whole gamut here. The stuff about Twitter, where he said I've had it with this guy. And McCarthy comes out and issues a flat denial. 'This is fake news. They've made it up. It's not true."

"And then you have the tapes," he remarked. "Every quote in that original story is backed up by the tapes. Every single quote and McCarthy has come to the world and said it was all fake news, it's not true. Now, maybe, maybe, you think that doesn't matter. Maybe it doesn't matter politically but there is a question of credibility. The denial was not accurate. The denial was, in fact, a lie."

Christie offered no response.

Can you help us out?

For nearly 20 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit, but now Facebook is drowning us in an ocean of right wing lies. Please give a one-time or recurring donation, or buy a year's subscription for an ad-free experience. Thank you.


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service for information on our posting policy.