On Thursday, President Trump spoke to reporters who were asking him about Lev Parnas, an associate of Rudy Giuliani who claims Trump was aware of efforts to get information about rival presidential candidates. In the process, CNN’s Jim Acosta, as per his usual style, kept interrupting Trump, at which point Trump looked at him and shut him down, saying sternly, “Quiet.”
Acosta asked, “What is your response to what Parnas who says that your efforts in Ukraine, that you just wanted Joe Biden out? What’s your response?”
Trump responded, “Well, I don’t know him; I don’t know Parnas other than I guess they had pictures taken, which I do with thousands of people, including people today that I didn’t meet. Just met him. I don’t know him at all; don’t know what he’s about; don’t know where he comes from; know nothing about him. I can only tell you that this thing is a big hoax; it’s a big hoax; this is the current hoax. We’ve gone through the Russian witch hunt; we’ve gone through a lot of ’em from probably before I came down the escalator, but certainly since I came down the escalator you take a look at what’s happened.”
Acosta started to interrupt, but Trump continued, “Doesn’t matter what he says; he’s probably trying to make a deal for himself.” Acosta barged in again, but Trump went on, “I don’t even know who this man is other than I guess he attended fundraisers so I take a picture with him. I’m in a room; I take pictures with people. I take pictures with thousands and thousands of people all the time. Thousands during the course of the year, and oftentimes I’ll be taking a picture with someone I’ll say, ‘I wonder what newspaper that one’s going to appear in.” No, I don’t know him; perhaps he’s a fine man, perhaps he’s not; I know nothing about him.