CNN’s Erin Burnett asked former Donald Trump campaign aide Sam Nunberg point blank if he’d been drinking after a day of cable news interviews, saying she could smell alcohol on his breath.
Nunberg spent several hours Monday in interviews on cable news shows after he said he would refuse to comply with a subpoena from Special Counsel Robert Mueller as part of the investigation into the Trump campaign. The outspoken Nunberg’s comments, which included a vow to tear up the subpoena on TV and assertions about the guilt of former Trump administration colleagues, prompted many viewers to wonder on social media if he’d been drinking, or was on drugs.
Burnett put the question to Nunberg directly.
“You’ve done six interviews this the past four hours,” Burnett said to Nunberg during an interview on “Erin Burnett OutFront.” “‘Bizarre’ was a word that some White House officials were using to describe some of your interviews. ‘Nuts’ is another one … I reached out to a Trump ally. This person told me, … ‘You’re drunk or off your meds.’ At least half a dozen other CNN reporters have received similar messages. Is this a hit job or is something wrong?”
Continuing, Burnett said, “Talking to you, I have smelled alcohol on your breath.”
“I have not had a drink,” Nunberg replied.
Burnett said that Nunberg’s former colleagues have said while watching him on TV Monday that he does not look well and could be inebriated. She asked whether he had taken “anything else.”
“No, besides my meds,” Nunberg said. “Anti-depressants. Is that okay?”
Nunberg appeared on multiple cable news shows during the course of the day to talk about the Mueller investigation and the Trump White House.
“I think that he may have done something during the election,” Nunberg said of Trump during a rambling 20-minute interview with MSNBC, adding that he didn’t “know that for sure.”
Nunberg’s comments came after The Washington Post reported he had been subpoenaed to appear in front of a grand jury as part of Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s role in the election. Nunberg told the Post he did not plan on complying with Mueller’s subpoena.
The White House did not immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment. But White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said Monday that Nunberg is “incorrect” about his assertion that Mueller could have something.
In August 2015, Trump’s campaign fired Nunberg when Business Insider unearthed his old Facebook posts from years before — specifically one in which he called the Rev. Al Sharpton’s daughter the N-word.
Nunberg told TheWrap in an Aug. 24, 2017 interview that he didn’t remember writing the post — and that alcohol may have been involved.
But he said he did take responsibility for it.
“I suffered serious consequences,” he says, adding that he has apologized to Sharpton, who accepted.