Speaking of CNN....
CNN's Jeff Zucker was jeered and heckled by Republican presidential campaign operatives at the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics' campaign managers conference on Wednesday evening as he tried to defend CNN's coverage of Donald Trump, as a usually formal event turned tense and, at times, raucous.
The event featured Zucker in conversation with Washington Post editor Marty Baron, AP editor Kathleen Carol and Elliot Schrage, vice president of communications and public policy at Facebook, moderated by journalist Sasha Issenberg.
Politico writes that after a calm beginning, it didn't take long for the evening to erupt when the conversation turned to CNN's coverage.
GOP campaign managers who worked for President-elect Donald Trump's primary opponents shouted Zucker down with increasing anger as he defended how much airtime the network gave Trump, and claimed it allowed other candidates to dial in to shows by phone.
Zucker defended CNN’s coverage, though he admitted it perhaps aired too many of Trump’s early rallies “unedited” -- an admission he has made before.
But the room grew more and more animated as Zucker went on to say that many campaign managers thought it was “unfair” how much coverage and attention Trump was getting.
"I have to respectfully push back on the campaign managers who spoke here today, because frankly, respectfully, I think that’s bullshit. Donald Trump was on CNN a lot,” Zucker said, refusing to back down. “That’s because we asked him to do interviews and he agreed to do them. We continuously asked the other candidates to come on and do interviews."
Zucker, who described an interview Sen. Marco Rubio did on CNN, where he later objected to a question about abortion and religion and subsequently refused to appear on air for 10 weeks, said they invited all candidates to come on and talk, even by phone.
The room grew increasingly restless and the strategists started piping up, interrupting Zucker and Issenberg.
“I don’t remember getting invited to call in, though,” Sarah Isgur Flores, Carly Fiorina’s deputy campaign manager said, kicking off a parade of comments.
More irritated voices across the room quickly chimed in: “We didn’t get that call.” “We’d be invited for eight seconds.” “At 2 o’clock in the afternoon we’d be invited on,” another said sarcastically.
“All of the Republican candidates were invited to come on,” Zucker said. “Cable news in general, CNN in particular, should not be held responsible for the fact that Donald Trump said yes to those interviews.”