Politico chief Washington correspondent Ryan Lizza and New York Republican Rep. Lee Zeldin got into a spat on-camera as Lizza repeatedly asked about President Joe Biden winning the election.
The interview took place Thursday on Politico Live and started off with coverage of Zeldin’s reported plans to run for governor. The topic soon moved to the 2020 election, as Zeldin was one lawmaker who objected to certifying the election results. (RELATED: These Are The House Republicans Who Voted With Trump On Both The NDAA Veto And $2,000 Stimulus Checks)
“This is a question we got from a lot of people that heard you were coming on the broadcast, and that is: Can you unequivocally state that Joe Biden won the presidential election — and just to remind viewers, you voted against certifying the results in Arizona and Pennsylvania. Can you unequivocally state that?” Lizza asked.
Zeldin responded by affirming that Biden “is” president and noted that “that’s how you become the president of the United States.” As he responded, Lizza began to laugh and said he was asking the question “very intentionally.”
“‘Is’ or ‘won?'” Lizza wondered as he asked again if Biden “won the presidential election.”
“Yes,” Zeldin responded. “And then I went on to continue and answer. If you’d like to give my answer for me, you can go ahead and do that, but I thought I was going to be here to answer my own questions.”
Lizza continued to push and said he was not trying to give an answer for Zeldin. The Politico correspondent then harped on how Zeldin answered once again.
“You said he ‘is’ the president, and I was asking: Did he win?” Lizza wondered.
Zeldin pointed out that the question had been asked “for a third time” and noted that he responded “yes” two times. The Republican lawmaker then wondered what kind of “agenda” Lizza had and said the line of questions was “ridiculous.”
“I don’t know how many more times you want me to say yes and what your agenda is, but really it’s a bit ridiculous to be asking me a third time. But, please go ahead and ask me again,” Zeldin said, prompting Politico’s Tara Palmeri to interject in an attempt to diffuse the fight.
Palmeri suggested Lizza was simply “clarifying” Zeldin’s reply, to which the Republican expressed frustration at how many times the question had been asked. That sparked another reply from Palmeri, who quipped back that they could “keep going.”
“Sure, let’s do it a sixth time,” Zeldin sarcastically responded.