Debate moderator Steve Scully blames Twitter hack after post to Scaramucci mocking Trump creates uproar
C-SPAN Political Editor Steve Scully on Friday, October 9, said his Twitter account was hacked after a message was sent out to Anthony Scaramucci, a critic of President Donald Trump, after the commander-in-chief called Scully a “Never Trumper” on Sean Hannity’s show on Fox.
C-SPAN came up with a statement the same day to say: “Steve Scully did not originate the tweet and believes his account has been hacked.”
When one visited the Twitter account of Scully, it was found to be “protected” with the words “ Only approved followers can see” his posts.
The Scully-to-Scaramucci message that came under the scanner read: “should I respond to Trump” and was sent out during Hannity's program. The now-deleted tweet was posted around 9 pm, hours after Trump slammed Scully, who was supposed to moderate the second presidential debate in Miami on October 15. The Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) scrapped the event after Trump refused to take part in a virtual debate with Democratic candidate Joe Biden in the wake of his Covid-19 diagnosis, as per the organizers.
Trump has been repeatedly attacking Scully as a “Never Trumper”. On Friday, the president tweeted saying: “Steve Scully, the second Debate Moderator, is a Never Trumper, just like the son of the great Mike Wallace. Fix!!!”
Steve Scully, the second Debate Moderator, is a Never Trumper, just like the son of the great Mike Wallace. Fix!!!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 9, 2020
The president has targeted Chris Wallace, the son of Mike Wallace and the moderator of the first debate, in the past saying he was being controlled by the radical Left and told him during the Ohio debate: “I guess I’m debating you, not him. But that's okay. I'm not surprised.”
President Trump to Chris Wallace: "First of all, I guess I’m debating you, not him. But that's okay. I'm not surprised." pic.twitter.com/MgZZtkWJlT— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) September 30, 2020
Scully’s defense that his Twitter account has been hacked did not convince Trump. In another tweet targeting Scully, the president said: “.@SteveScully, the Never Trumper next debate moderator, got caught cold. Pulled out the old, “I’ve been hacked”, line. That never works. His bosses are furious at him as he’s lost all credibility!”
.@SteveScully, the Never Trumper next debate moderator, got caught cold. Pulled out the old, “I’ve been hacked”, line. That never works. His bosses are furious at him as he’s lost all credibility!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 9, 2020
Scaramucci, who was once an ardent Trump supporter but now shares a sour relation with the president now, replied to Scully’s controversial tweet mocking Trump: “Ignore. He is having a hard enough time. Some more bad stuff about to go down.”
Ignore. He is having a hard enough time. Some more bad stuff about to go down. https://t.co/cMphfQJELL— Anthony Scaramucci (@Scaramucci) October 9, 2020
Scaramucci backs Scully's claim
He also believed Scully over his explanation that the tweet was not posted by him. In a tweet prior to Trump’s attack against Scully, he wrote: “I accept @SteveScully at his word. Let’s not cancel any more people from our culture for absolutely something like this. It’s insignificant. He is an objective journalist.”
I accept @SteveScully at his word. Let’s not cancel anymore people from our culture for absolutely something like this. It’s insignificant. He is an objective journalist.— Anthony Scaramucci (@Scaramucci) October 9, 2020
Frank Fahrenkopf, chairman of the CPD, also said on Fox News' The Brian Kilmeade Show on Friday morning that Scully's account was "hacked." "Steve is a man of great integrity, okay? I don't know this question about whether he tweeted something out or not, I do know, and you'll probably pick up on it in a minute, that he was hacked,” Fahrenkopf said.
Scully has claimed hacking in the past as well
However, this is not the first time that Scully has distanced himself from posts posted in his name. In March 2013, he wrote in a tweet: “I apologize for some earlier TWEETS...account was hacked...those tweets did not come from me. Thanks all for alerting me.” In May 2012, too, he did the same by tweeting: “I apologize for Saturday's tweets regarding weight loss, etc. I still have my day job at C-SPAN...darn those hackers. Have a great Sunday.
That Trump is suspicious about Scully being a supporter of Biden was evident when he told Hannity: “I think somebody said he worked for Biden at one point.” Scully, in fact, did work for Biden in the past but that was way back in 1978 when he was a mail-room intern for the former Delaware senator’s office, as per a brief biography. He also worked in the media affairs office of late Democratic senator Ted Kennedy in early 1979. Both these stints were for college credits.
During the 2016 presidential election, Scully tweeted a link to a New York Times op-ed titled “No, Not Trump, Not Ever”. However, though Scully has worked for Biden in the past, there is not adequate evidence to back Trump’s claim that he is part of the “Never Trump” movement.