Fox News host Megyn Kelly on Wednesday night questioned whether Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) was ready for the scrutiny of a presidential campaign, citing numerous recent interviews in which Paul was testy with reporters.
Paul told Kelly that “interviews are difficult,” especially when they are contentious and the interviewer is “editorializing.”
“I don’t think it makes for good TV on both sides. And I do lose my cool,” Paul said on “The Kelly File,” adding that viewers don’t want to watch “yelling.”
“Those women were not yelling at you,” Kelly interjected.
Kelly asked Paul about his heated interview with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie on Wednesday, in which he accused her of “editorializing,” and about his interview with CNBC’s Kelly Evans, when he shushed the anchor. Paul also got “testy” with a male Associated Press reporter on Wednesday.
“Do you regret shushing the reporter?” Kelly asked Paul. “Savanannah Guthrie’s not exactly known for her aggressive unfairness.”
“I think the question was unfair,” Paul answered. “Do I think that I responded appropriately? You know, I would rather not have contentious interviews. I’d rather do 30 minutes with Charlie Roes, laid back in a lazy boy chair.”
Kelly pointed out that interviewers don’t typically have very much time.
“The question some people are asking about you is whether you’re ready for prime time because it’s only going to get worse,” Kelly said. “Did you get overly emotional?”
Paul said that he doesn’t believe people want a president who will “roll over and take it.”
Kelly told Paul that she felt it was fair to question whether Paul was too “thin-skinned,” but she defended him from accusations that he only grew “testy” with female reporters.
“Chuck Todd came out and said you had to be careful because you attacked two prominent female interviewers. The Guardian said you were condescending to female reporters,” Kelly said. “I, as a female reporter, will say to Chuck Todd and The Guardian: we don’t need your help. Savannah Guthrie doesn’t need your help. Kelly Evans doesn’t need your help, and you are entitled to push back on the interviewer just as much as you would if it were a man.”
Paul said that he may be thin-skinned, but that he responds to male and female reporters in the same manner.
Watch the interview below via Fox News. Kelly begins asking Paul about his recent interviews at the 6:15 mark.