Former Republican Ohio Governor John Kasich got into a nasty exchange Monday night with CNN host Don Lemon.
Kasich, who is now a CNN contributor, wasn’t prepared to say a transcript of President Donald Trump’s controversial telephone conversation with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky contained a quid pro quo.
Lemon asked him, “Were you confused about what [the transcript] meant?” (RELATED: Rep. Schiff Fabricates What Trump Said In Ukraine Telephone Call Transcript)
Kasich suggested that many Republican voters believe that haggling between political leaders is not uncommon.
“Hang on. You know this is not something that all politicians do. All politicians do not call on a foreign country to help them out in their reelection process,” Lemon insisted.
“No, I know that. I agree with you. I agree with that. But … the Republican Party needs to get a grip on itself. We need the Colin Powells. We need the senior states people,” Kasich countered.
Lemon suggested it is “incumbent on the politicians, the people who are actually leaders, to tell the people exactly what’s going on instead of having the president and his apologists shape a message that is not true — because anybody with half a brain who read that transcript knows exactly what the president was saying … You know exactly what he meant.” (RELATED: Schiff Clarifies His Fabricated Account Of Ukraine Transcript By Calling It ‘Parody’)
“Wait, wait, wait. You can’t say stuff like that,” Kasich argued.
“Did you read the transcript?” Kasich said “of course” he had.
“Were you confused by what it meant?” Lemon asked.
Kasich responded that he did not believe the conversation clearly showed that Trump was demanding his Ukrainian counterpart conduct an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden’s alleged misconduct if Zelensky wanted to receive military assistance from the United States.
“I will tell you this. Look, in reading that transcript, I did not see a clear quid pro quo.”
Lemon called Kasich, a fierce opponent of the Trump presidency, someone who is “doing exactly what the apologists are doing … You’re not helping people understand the problem, then you are part of the problem.”