Donald Trump was interviewed by Pat Robertson, of the Christian Broadcasting Network
Like his son the night before, President Donald Trump sought out a friendly face in the media on Wednesday with the news still dominated by talk of Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with a woman tied to Russian leaders who offered campaign dirt on Hillary Clinton.
The President was interviewed in the White House by Pat Robertson, the 87-year-old founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network. It was his first non-Fox News Channel interview in several weeks.
Mr. Robertson did not ask about the story involving the President’s son, a spokesman said. It seemed to be on the President’s mind, since he told Mr. Robertson that he doubted reports that Russian President Vladimir Putin would rather see him as President than Ms. Clinton. In the overture his son had received for the meeting last summer, Mr. Trump Jr. was told that Mr. Putin supported his father’s candidacy.
Mr. Trump also spoke on Wednesday to Reuters, telling the news agency that he wished he had asked Mr. Putin whether he was actively supporting his candidacy when the two heads of state met last week. “It’s really the one question I wish I would have asked Putin- Were you actually supporting me?” Mr. Trump said.
Wednesday’s White House briefing was off camera, led by Sarah Huckabee Sanders. She was asked why the President had not had any public appearances in three days, and said he will appear at a news conference in France on Thursday.
Fox News Channel’s Sean Hannity reached just under 2.9 million viewers for his interview with Mr. Trump Jr. on Tuesday, the most-watched program in a busy night on cable news, the Nielsen company said. That is 8 per cent above his season average.
The show was a soft landing spot for the young Mr. Trump; Mr. Hannity has repeatedly described himself as an opinion host and not a journalist, and preceded the interview by outlining stories critical to Democrats that he claimed were unjustly ignored by a mainstream media that has “zero credibility.”
Although Trump supporters in the media had their defenses ready, there were signs that not everyone on Trump-friendly media were buying the talking points that the latest revelations were an overreaction from a hysterical media.
In a statement about his son, President Trump praised his “transparency” in releasing the material.