CNN Commentator Mocks Santorum While Asking Him Not to Talk Down to Her

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Posted: Jan 08, 2018 2:15 PM
CNN Commentator Mocks Santorum While Asking Him Not to Talk Down to Her

CNN commentator Angela Rye and former presidential candidate Rick Santorum (R-PA) sparred over a new Axios report Monday detailing President Trump's "secret, shrinking schedule." Reporter Jonathan Swan reported that White House officials told him the president had been demanding more "Executive time," which supposedly meant his watching TV and scanning Twitter - at the expense of meetings.

Trump's days in the Oval Office are relatively short – from around 11am to 6pm, then he's back to the residence. During that time he usually has a meeting or two, but spends a good deal of time making phone calls and watching cable news in the dining room adjoining the Oval. Then he's back to the residence for more phone calls and more TV. (Axios)

“Every president has downtime," Santorum said on CNN in defense of Trump. "Clearly the president watches television,” adding he finds no issue with Trump's watching TV in the Oval Office.

Rye, an attorney and CEO of IMPACT Strategies, saw Trump's schedule differently. It is "very disconcerting" to her that Trump needs three hours of downtime in the morning, she said.

“I don’t know if you know, but the president is a pretty stressful office," Santorum shot back.

It was that last comment that particularly irked Rye, who saw it as condescension. 

Making sure to call him "former Sen. Rick Santorum," Rye lambasted him for "talking down" to her because he "doesn't like" what she said.

Santorum corrected her, explaining that he was not trying to demean her. He wasn't talking down to her, he said, he was talking down to "the comments" she made.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders defended the president's schedule in a statement provided to Axios.

"The time in the morning is a mix of residence time and Oval Office time but he always has calls with staff, Hill members, cabinet members and foreign leaders during this time. The President is one of the hardest workers I've ever seen and puts in long hours and long days nearly every day of the week all year long. It has been noted by reporters many times that they wish he would slow down because they sometimes have trouble keeping up with him."