After cutting his interview with Lesley Stahl short on Tuesday and later threatening to release the White House’s own recording of his curtailed appearance, 60 Minutes has decided to do Donald Trump a solid and start releasing clips of his upcoming Sunday appearance themselves. This morning, the president took to Twitter to call his 60 Minutes visit a “vicious attempted ‘takeout’ interview.” While Trump has, at this point, been complaining for days about the interview, lambasting Stahl on Twitter for her “constant interruptions & anger” in the face of his “full, flowing and ‘magnificently brilliant’ answers” (no, honestly, he said that), the clip released by 60 Minutes shows Stahl pushing back on an oft-repeated Trump lie about the economy.
“We created the greatest economy in the history of our country, and the other side was coming in —” the president begins. Stahl interjects, “You know that’s not true” with a smile. “It is totally true. Virtually every number was the best. We had the best economy ever,” Trump insists. In the same clip, the president says his top domestic priority is to once again let “the economy rage” and laments that China “allowed this plague” to get out of their country, in reference to the COVID-19 virus. Trump exited the 60 Minutes interview after 45 minutes.
It’s not clear what differences Trump thinks exist between the “first in television history, fully unedited preview” of his interview he vowed to release Wednesday and the actual interview, but either way, you can see him this Sunday on CBS’ 60 Minutes.
Update, October 22, 1 p.m: In the hopes of getting his narrative about his upcoming 60 Minutes appearance out ahead of Sunday’s episode, Trump posted a 37-minute video of his interview with Lesley Stahl to Facebook on Wednesday. “Are you ready for some tough questions?,” she asks him at the beginning of the video. “No, I’m not,” he replies. According to TVLine, the video is footage recorded on set by the White House for archival purposes.
“Look at the bias, hatred and rudeness on behalf of 60 Minutes and CBS,” Trump declares in the video’s caption. “Tonight’s anchor, Kristen Welker, is far worse!” Welker will be the moderator at Thursday’s final presidential debate.
In the interview footage posted by Trump, which you can watch here, he grows increasingly frustrated at Stahl’s questions, repeatedly complaining that she wouldn’t ask Biden anything but “softball questions,” before cutting the interview short. How this footage is different from the version still set to air on 60 Minutes on Sunday is, of course, still unclear.