Yesterday, The Washington Examiner released audio of Donald Trump’s counselor Kellyanne Conway calling up their reporter Caitlin Yilek and berating her for writing an article about the rampant speculation that Mrs. Conway might be the next choice for Trump’s chief of staff. Conway was incensed that Yilek had mentioned her husband George Conway in her piece. Mr. Conway is a noted outspoken critic of the president despite his wife’s powerful position within the administration.
The released audio includes Conway personally insulting Yilek by saying that she is “really going places” and that “nobody” read her story anyway. Yilek offered to connect her with an editor at the Examiner to share her thoughts at which Conway delivered a self-aggrandizing tirade.
“Let me tell you something, from a powerful woman. Don’t pull the crap where you’re trying to undercut another woman based on who she’s married to. He gets his power through me, if you haven’t noticed. Not the other way around. And if these are the quote standards unquote at the Washington Examiner, then yes I’d be happy to talk to your editor. But I’ve known your editor since before you were born,” Conway said.
Towards the end of the call, Conway went so far as to imply that the White House might start investigating journalists who dare to report on George Conway.
“Listen, if you’re going to cover my personal life, then we’re welcome to do the same around here. If it has nothing to do with my job, which it doesn’t, that’s obvious, then we’re either going to expect you to cover everybody’s personal life or we’re going to start covering them over here,” Conway threatened.
Now, Conway has responded to the release of the phone call. While speaking to reporters outside the White House, she snapped out when someone asked her if it was “appropriate” to threaten Yilek.
“Whoa, whoa, whoa, I never threatened anyone. Don’t use those words,” said Conway “No, no, no. How? No, no, no I didn’t threat. It’s not a threat. I never threatened her. Don’t use that word if it’s not true. Do not. If I threaten someone you’ll know it. If I threaten someone you’ll know it okay? And so don’t do that. Don’t do that,” she went on.
The persistent reporter pressed her on what she meant by her comments during the call.
“I think it’s very obvious,” she said.
“It seems obvious as a threat, to dig into her personally,” the reporter replied.
“Dig in? Who cares? You don’t even know her name,” Conway said, at which point the reporter said Yilek’s name. “Well now you know her name,” Conway said. She then launched into an aggrieved spiel about Yilek’s coverage of her after which the reporter once again tried to get an explanation for the threat.
“Don’t use the word threaten, don’t use the word investigate, and stop being so silly. Honestly, stop being so silly. It’s silly,” Conway said, visibly upset and clearly unable to provide an answer.
Watch the interaction below.
— CSPAN (@cspan) October 25, 2019
And be sure to check out the audio of the original call below.