A CNN anchor accused GOP presidential contender Ted Cruz of “B.S.” as accusations flew in a dustup that has continued in the wake of the Iowa caucuses. The hassle centers on how CNN and Cruz characterized the activities of another GOP candidate, Ben Carson, in the hours before the Iowa vote.
“The network’s reporting — that Carson would make a trip to Florida before resuming his campaign — came as voters in Iowa were preparing to make the first solid votes of the 2016 campaign,” TVNewser reports. “That’s not quite how the story was shared by the Cruz campaign, which spread word in Iowa that Carson seemed to be suspending his campaign.”
Cruz subsequently cited the CNN report as the source of his campaign’s information. Cruz said in a televised interview: “Our political team passed on a CNN news story that CNN wrote. The news story said that Ben Carson was not continuing from Iowa on to New Hampshire and was not continuing to South Carolina — instead he was going home to Florida. … Our political team passed it on to our supporters. It was breaking news that was relevant.”
CNN countered the Cruz claim with a strong statement Wednesday evening, saying: “Senator Cruz’s claims about CNN are false. At no point did the network indicate Dr. Carson would suspend his campaign.”
CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin, meanwhile, commented on the dispute on the air Wednesday, saying: “When Senator Cruz, with all due respect, tries to throw my network and CNN under the bus, let me stand up for my colleagues and journalists here … we reported it accurately.” She later added: “I’m going to call out B.S. if I hear B.S., and that was B.S.”
The CNN statement adds: “Dr. Carson’s staff informed CNN that he would return home to take a ‘deep breath’ before resuming his activities on the trail. That information was reported accurately by CNN across TV and digital.”