“We had prepared to talk about the many issues and questions facing the president, but in what has become an all-too-public dust-up, the conversation was cut short,” said Stahl, in narration that accompanied her interview with Trump. “It began politely, but ended regrettably, contentiously.”
Stahl opened the proceedings by asking the president if he “was ready for some questions?” She probably expected a quip by the president in return. She reminded him that he liked to spar with her in the past.
But not this time around.
Trump responded by saying he wasn’t (“ready for tough questions”), and that he just wanted Stahl “to be fair.”
Apparently the president didn’t feel the questions were fair, and he felt Stahl was “too negative.”
He also accused 60 Minutes of throwing softball questions to Joe Biden.
“He’s never been asked a question that’s hard,” Trump said.
Trump also didn’t appreciate that Stahl wouldn’t talk about the already-debunked reports about the vice president’s son’s business dealings in the Ukraine, a topic that has been discussed on conservative media rather frequently in recent weeks.
“This is 60 Minutes, and we can’t put on things we can’t verify,” said Stahl.
Around 45 minutes in, as the conversation grew increasingly testy, 60 executive producer Bill Owens “interrupted to advise about the time remaining in the interview.”
As that time, Trump said, “I think we have enough of an interview here, Hope [adviser Hicks]. OK? That’s enough. Let’s go. Let’s go.” Trump walked off while Stahl stayed seated, and seemingly confused.
Later, White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany walked in and said, “The president wanted me to deliver his healthcare plan, it’s a little heavy.”
Stahl: Oh my god. This is his healthcare plan?
Stahl: OK. Kayleigh, thank you.
McEnany: You’re welcome and the vice president will be with you shortly.
Stahl: OK. And the president’s not coming back?
McEnany: The president’s given you a lot of time.
It was an oversized book of executive orders, “but no comprehensive health plan,” Stahl reported.