ABC’s George Stephanopoulos surprised some viewers Sunday when he abruptly cut off Sen. J.D. Vance mid-interview after the latter appeared on “This Week” and argued that it’s legal for a U.S. president to defy Supreme Court rulings.
Vance told Stephanopoulos, “The Constitution says that the Supreme Court can make rulings, but if the Supreme Court — and look, I hoped that they would not do this — but if the Supreme Court said the president of the United States can’t fire a general, that would be an illegitimate ruling.”
Wow. Stephanopoulos shuts down his interview with Vance and cuts him off after Vance insists that the president can defy the Supreme Court. pic.twitter.com/P2Kn60Jr29
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) February 4, 2024
“The president has to have Article II prerogative under the Constitution to actually run the military as he sees fit. This is just basic constitutional legitimacy,” Vance added.
Stephanopoulos then cut in and told Vance, “You’ve made it very clear — you believe the president can defy the Supreme Court. Senator, thanks for your time this morning.” As Vance tried to respond and deny Stephanopoulos’ assessment, his mic was cut.
Reporter Aaron Rupar shared the moment on social media, but Vance trying to jump back in and talking silently after his mic was cut has been removed from the segment in the official video on ABC’s website.
The comment was one of several questionable statements Vance shared on “This Week.” Stephanopoulos also asked Vance if he would have certified the results of the 2020 election if he had been vice president at the time.
“Oh, George, this is such a ridiculous question,” Vance began, “in part because the law has changed here.”
The pair then spoke over one another. The host told Vance, “I didn’t ask you about going forward, I asked you what you would have done. I asked you what you would have done.”
“I don't want to talk about this stuff because I think what happened in 2020 is far, far less important than what's happened since 2020,” GOP Sen. JD Vance tells @GStephanopoulos when asked if he would have certified the 2020 election results on Jan. 6. https://t.co/ZyGQPVJ7Ww pic.twitter.com/B11WFRXKgc
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) February 4, 2024
“George, here’s what I think — here’s what I think happened in 2020, and I know you guys are obsessed with talking about this. I have to make a point here,” Vance said. “You constantly say to people like me, ‘Why do you talk about January the 6th, why do you talk about the election of 2020?'”
“And then you ask about it multiple times during a six-minute interview. But look, you asked the question, and I’ll answer it. Do I think there were problems in 2020? Yes, I do. Do I think it was a problem that big technology companies working with the intelligence services censored the presidential campaign of Donald Trump? Yes.”
He added, “Do I think it’s a problem that Pennsylvania changed its balloting rules in the middle of the election season in a way that even some courts in Pennsylvania have said was illegal? Yes, I think these were problems, George, and I think there was a political solution to those problems.”
“So, litigating which slate of electors was legitimate, I think is fundamentally the political solution to the problems that existed in 2020. It’s a reasonable debate to have, and I find it weird, George, that people like you obsessed with what I call what happened in 2020. You’re so uncurious about what actually happened in 2020, which is why so many people mistrust our elections in this country,” he concluded.
If there was an answer to his question in there, Stephanopoulos didn’t find it. You can watch the full segment at the top of this video, along with the edited portion in the social media clip above.
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