CNN’s Jake Tapper Shreds Rick Scott’s ‘Word Salad’ Attack on Him

Jake Tapper on Friday fired back at Sen. Rick Scott’s recent “nonsensical” invocation of comments the CNN anchor made years ago, blasting the GOP lawmaker’s “word salad” as “very strange” and “incomprehensible.”

During a CNN interview on Thursday morning, Scott attempted to defend his long-debunked claim that Democrats and President Joe Biden actually “cut $280 billion out of Medicare.” Scott’s revival of this falsehood came after Biden warned that “some” Republicans were looking to sunset Social Security and Medicare, citing Scott’s proposal that does just that.

After CNN anchor Kaitlan Collins challenged Scott’s claim as misleading and deceptive (which it very much is), the Florida senator doubled down by referencing remarks Tapper made in 2017 during an interview with then-Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price. At that time, Tapper noted that the Trump administration proposed an $880-billion cut to Medicaid. (The bill never passed.)

“So CNN says it’s not a cut if Democrats do it, it is a cut if Republicans do it,” Scott huffed while referencing Tapper eight different times during the Thursday segment. (The two situations are nothing alike.)

Appearing on CNN This Morning the next day, Tapper spoke with Collins and her co-anchors Poppy Harlow and Don Lemon about suddenly getting thrown into the latest GOP political battle.

“Jake, what did you make of that, watching that interview, hearing your name be invoked so many times by Sen. Scott?” Collins wondered.

“Well, first of all, a rough morning for anybody that was playing the Jake Tapper drinking game,” Tapper quipped. “It was incomprehensible, to be honest.”

Adding that there were “so many issues” with Scott’s comments, the veteran journalist pointed out that Scott has literally proposed what Biden is accusing him of doing, which is sunseting entitlement programs. “That’s just a fact,” he declared. “For whatever reason, Sen. Scott didn’t want to stand by that plan.”

Noting that there are “real issues” with the solvency of these programs and lawmakers “should have that conversation,” Tapper asserted that the road Scott has decided to take isn’t the way to discuss it.

“Whatever that was, that word salad where he kept on mentioning me was just very strange to me because he was trying to compare Medicare now [and] being able to negotiate drug prices with drug companies—which is not a cut from Medicare, it’s a cut in pharmaceutical company profits, no question, but it’s not a cut in Medicare—with me asking a question about the Congressional Budget Office analysis of a Medicaid bill from 2017,” the CNN anchor declared. “I mean, it’s really just kind of nonsensical.”

Lemon, meanwhile, claimed Scott was merely repeating a “talking point” handed to him as a “kind of a gotcha to CNN during Kaitlan’s interview,” and that the senator hadn’t leaned into Tapper’s past comments in other interviews. Tapper, for his part, brought up Fox News anchor John Roberts cornering Scott last year on the senator’s own proposal.

“He accused Fox of reading Democratic talking points,” Tapper said. “And all John was doing was literally reading the Rick Scott plan.”

Although conservatives have melted down over Biden’s warning about Scott’s proposal and falsely claimed the president is lying about Republicans wanting to slash Social Security and Medicare, it isn’t just Scott who has called for massive cuts to the programs.

Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) previously said he wanted to “pull up” and “get rid of” Social Security. Giving Democrats more fodder, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) insisted on Thursday that Social Security was a “Ponzi scheme” and it was time to change the way entitlement programs were funded. And other GOP lawmakers have said they’re “on board” with Scott’s plan. Additionally, House Republicans have been floating changes to Social Security and Medicare for months now.

This content was originally published here.

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