CNN’s Poppy Harlow knows how to bite back. She recently questioned White House Deputy Press Secretary Brian Morgenstern about the New York Times report documenting how President Trump has paid little to no income taxes for the past 15 years. Morgenstern surprised no one with a now-familiar Trump Administration comeback. “It’s probably coordinated political smear,” he observed (via CNN). Harlow, who is used to interviewing hard-hitters like Warren Buffet, Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Melinda Gates, and Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, didn’t flinch. “These are remarkable reporters from The New York Times that went through 20 years of documents,” she cut in, “It’s not okay to accuse them, with no facts, of coordinating with the Democratic Party. Please stop doing that or this interview will end.” Ouch, said Twitter.
But if Harlow’s pluck and determination surprised the Twitterverse, anyone who’s followed the two-time Emmy-nominated reporter knows that Harlow’s remarks are par for the course (via Leading Authorities). Harlow, who once made national news for fainting mid-broadcast while pregnant, is nothing if not determined (via Inside Edition). In fact, one of the hardest lessons that the mother of two has learned is how to set boundaries between her work and home life. “Saying no can be uncomfortable and feel awkward, but trust me, it is liberating,” reflected Harlow in a 2017 USA Today column.
Poppy Harlow is not afraid to confront the Trump Administration
Harlow’s Twitter feed is a veritable Trump-administration fact-checking service, covering everything from climate change (yes — science DOES know, writes Harlow) to the economic wellbeing of the United States. In case it isn’t abundantly clear by now, Poppy Harlow is no dumb blonde. The Colombia University grad got her start at CBS Newspath, moved on to broadcast reporting at NY1, and then to Forbes.com, before landing a job at CNNMoney (via Colombia College Today). To clinch the spot at CNNMoney, Harlow followed the program’s executive producer onto the elevator and out into the street. “I always think, what do I have to lose?,” she reflected afterward.
Her persistence has served her well on CNN Newsroom, where over the past several months Harlow has directly and consistently clashed Trump Administration officials over the Administration’s handling of the novel coronavirus. When interviewing Trump’s campaign advisor, Mercedes Schlapp, she interrupted Schlapp several times, demanding to know why the administration had failed to act in a timely fashion to prevent COVID-19’s spread (via CNN).
Then, when interviewing White House’s Director of the National Economic Council, Larry Kudlow, she contradicted Kudlow’s allegations that coronavirus-related unemployment benefits would discourage Americans from re-entering the workplace. Harlow also challenged the premise that people should be re-entering the workplace at all, “Larry, it’s not safe! It’s not safe for a number of people to go back to work,” the anchor retorted angrily (via CNN).
Harlow calls her interview with Ruth Bader Ginsberg one of her most meaningful projects
As Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death shocked the nation, Poppy Harlow took to Twitter to remember the Supreme Court Justice. Interviewing Ruth Bater Ginsburg for a six-part CNN podcast, RBG: Beyond Notorious, had been, she said, “one of the most meaningful projects of my career.” Having recently given birth, Harlow almost didn’t take the interview. Fortunately, her husband said, “Do this interview. You will tell our kids about it one day,” Poppy Harlow recounted (via Twitter). She gave in.
What were the parts of the interview that struck the veteran news anchor the most? “There will be enough female justices on the Supreme Court when?” Harlow asked Ginsberg. “When there are nine, of course,” responded the Supreme Court Justice. Harlow also asked how would Ginsburg want to be remembered. “I would like to be remembered as someone who used whatever talent she had to do her work to the very best of her ability,” responded the notorious RBG.
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