Robin Roberts opened up on Monday about the details of her Jussie Smollett exclusive at The Cut’s “How I Get It Done” event in New York City.
The “Good Morning America” host discussed how she approached the interview and her hesitations about it, according to a report published by Page Six.
“I’ll be completely honest, I was like, ‘I don’t know if I want to do the interview or not,'” she said. “I said, ‘I don’t want to sit down with him if he’s going to lawyer up.'”
Roberts said Smollett wanted to sit down with her because he was angry about people not believing his story. However, Roberts was told she could ask him questions regarding the alleged attack. (RELATED: ‘Good Morning America’ Host Robin Roberts Breaks Silence On Jussie Smollett Interview)
However, many believe Roberts didn’t press him enough during the interview. She did catch some criticism for the way she conducted the interview.
“He’s a celebrity besides being a victim. He’s an actor and that was a celebrity interview more than a news person interview,” CNN Analyst Bill Carter said during “Reliable Sources.” “Instead of getting to the facts, it was much more about him and the effects on him.”
On “Reliable Sources” when prompted “The Fifth Column” podcast co-host Kmele Foster spoke about how Roberts didn’t press Smollett enough and didn’t ask the right questions.
“Robin Roberts in that interview had an opportunity to say ‘You know, Jussie, there are practical reasons for someone to ask questions about something like this that have nothing to do with your race or sexuality,'” Foster said. “She didn’t do that and there are far too many instances where serious journalists aren’t doing that.”
“I did the interview 48 hours before then. Had I had that information or [knew] what the brothers were alleging, heck yeah, I would have asked him about that.” Roberts noted that at the time of the interview Smollett was still considered a victim and that she chose her questions accordingly.
Roberts also talked about the pressure she felt being a part of the LGBT community. “It was a no-win situation for me,” she told The Cut. “It was one of the most challenging interviews I’ve ever had to do.”