White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany scolded reporters on Friday for its "lack of journalistic curiosity" in what the Trump administration believes to be the miscarriage of justice in the criminal case surrounding former national security advisor Michael Flynn.
CBS News Radio correspondent Steven Portnoy began his line of questioning by invoking remarks President Trump made in a recent interview where he suggested that people "should be jailed" for the "very obvious crime" that was committed against Flynn.
"You're an attorney and the president’s spokesperson. Perhaps you could lay out the elements of this crime. What crime was committed and in what way?" Portnoy asked.
"I assume you're referring to the Obama administration and the unmasking," McEnany responded.
"What the president calls 'Obamagate,' what is it? What are the elements of that crime?" Portnoy clarified.
"Yeah, I’m really glad you asked because there hasn't been a lot of journalistic curiosity on this front. And I'm very glad that you asked this question," the press secretary told Portnoy.
McEnany first began by pointing to the "number of questions" that were raised by the "actions" the Obama administration, listing the Democratic National Committee-funded Steele dossier and its involvement in the FISA warrants that were granted to surveil former Trump campaign advisor Carter Page \as well as the unmasking of Flynn by top Obama officials during the transition period between November 2016 and January 2017.
She then noted the Oval Office meeting that took place just days before Trump's inauguration between President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and acting Attorney General Sally Yates, who McEnany stressed "learned" about the unmasking from Obama and not from the Justice Department.
"We know that there was a lot of wrongdoing in the case of Michael Flynn. The FBI notes, for instance, that said, 'Should we,' quote, 'get him to lie,' as they pontificated their strategy," McEnany continued. "We know that the identity of this three-decade general was leaked to the press -- a criminal leak to the press of his identity in violation of his Fourth Amendment rights. These are very serious questions. They've been ignored by the media for far too long. And I'm very glad that I think that is the second question that I have fielded on Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, because justice does matter. Those questions, they matter."
Portnoy then asked what specifically was the "crime," which McEnany reiterated was the leaking of Flynn's name to the press in January 2017.
She then laid out other moments from Obama officials.
"if you want to start talking about wrongdoing in the administration, I’m happy to go through Andy McCabe leaking to The Wall Street Journal and then lying about it, happy to talk about James Clapper lying before Congress, saying the NSA does not monitor phone calls. That was an inaccuracy, to say the least, if not a lie," McEnany listed. "And John Brennan telling Congress that the bogus Steele dossier played no role in the Russia probe, when, in fact, we know it did and was the basis of attaining FISA warrants. So there's a lot of mistruths there that were said, many of them under oath, so I would point you to those and the many other real questions that I hope you all will pursue."
The CBS News Radio reporter then pressed McEnany if the individuals she listed were the people the president thought should be "in jail," but she pushed back, insisting that journalists should look into what she "laid out."
"That is, after all, the job of reporters, to answer the very questions that I've laid out, and I hope you guys will take the time to do it," McEnany told Portnoy.