Democrats advised CNN on interview questions for Donald Trump, according to new WikiLeaks release

Netwrok insists it had similar contacts with Republicans 

Monday 07 November 2016 17:27 GMT
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a rally, in Las Vegas in a Sunday, 30 October, 2016, file photo
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks at a rally, in Las Vegas in a Sunday, 30 October, 2016, file photo (AP)

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) apparently helped CNN anchors prepare for interviews with Donald Trump, according to the latest WikiLeaks email dump.

Included in some 8,263 emails released by WikiLeaks is an exchange that shows DNC staff discussing how to advise CNN on what questions to ask Mr Trump in a scheduled interview ahead of his foreign policy address.

However CNN defended the practice, saying it had sought the Republicans' opinions about questions to ask Hillary Clinton in order to "ensure a tough and fair interview".

Although the interview with Mr Trump was ultimately cancelled, the emails showed numerous questions were submitted by the DNC.

One email, sent from the DNC's research director Lauren Dillon to her colleagues, said: "[CNN journalist] Wolf Blitzer is interviewing Trump on Tues ahead of his foreign policy address on Wed. Please send me thoughts by 10:30 AM tomorrow."

An example of the questions that were sent to CNN included: “You've said we should have bombed the 'right people' after 9/11 and have suggested that the government has evidence Saudi Arabia was involved. Do you think we should have instead bombed Saudi Arabia?”

In a separate exchange, there were also internal DNC messages that indicate CNN asked for advice on what questions to put forward to former candidate Ted Cruz.

An email with the subject “Cruz on CNN”, sent in April of this year, said: “CNN is looking for questions.

“Please send some topical/interesting ones.”

A spokeswoman from CNN told The Independent: "This is completely unremarkable. We have similar communications with Republicans.

"When preparing for interviews, we are regularly sent suggestions from rival campaigns and political parties, both solicited and unsolicited. Casting a wide net to ensure a tough and fair interview isn't just common media practice, it's smart."

The latest release from WikiLeaks came only two days before the presidential election.

Based on recent polling, Ms Clinton appears the most likely to win.

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