Rick Santorum Backs Donald Trump Over Tax Scandal On CNN ‘New Day’

U.S. Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA) speaks to the media after testifying at the Base Realignment and Closure Commission hearing July 7, 2005 in Washington, DC.
Joe Raedle / Getty Images

Republican Congressman Rick Santorum stood by President Donald Trump on CNN’s New Day show, to the shock of viewers. While debating fellow Republican member of Congress Charlie Dent, Santorum followed Trump’s lead by claiming that a bombshell investigation reported by the The New York Times was fake news.

That story dropped over the weekend, revealing Trump paid just $750 in federal income tax in 2016. As noted by The Inquisitr over the weekend, the report stated that Trump failed to pay income tax in 10 out of 15 years before winning the 2016 election.

Santorum, one of Trump’s most public supporters and a regular analyst on the network, suggested he “shouldn’t be paying taxes” if he is losing money. In a video posted by New Day, the former presidential candidate added critics are using a hypocritical argument in an attempt to corner the president.

“You can’t complain that he’s not paying any taxes and then criticize him for … if he’s losing money, he’s not going to be paying taxes.”

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump (R) talks as rival candidate Mike Huckabee (L) and candidate Rick Santorum attend the rally for veterans
  Christopher Furlong / Getty Images

Over the weekend, the president pushed an angle that the NYT report is fake news. As reported by Mediaite, Santorum was also quick to double down on Trump’s rhetoric by questioning whether the story is true.

“And by the way, ‘The New York Times’ refuses to share the information with Trump. They’re refusing to show that they in fact have those documents.”

New Day anchor Alisyn Camerota and Dent, a Republican congressman who has endorsed Democrat candidate Joe Biden, were stunned by the comments. Camerota asked if Santorum was questioning if the story was legitimate. Santorum did not back down, and the host asked again.

“You doubt they actually have the information?”

Santorum pointed to NYT articles on Russian interference in elections, suggesting they were inaccurate. However, an independent Senate Intel committee report has already supported the legitimacy of what the newspaper wrote about Russia following the 2016 election.

Neither Camerota nor Dent pushed the congressman further, with the segment instead ending. However, on social media, viewers were quick to slam Santorum. Twitter users claimed the news network should simply stop using the politician because of his clear bias.

“Stop booking Rick Santorum on. Seriously, stop,” @tmoyer09 wrote and emphasized the point by writing in all capital letters.

Also on Twitter, @moe_abdella aimed anger at the channel for allowing the spread of misinformation.

“This morning I heard on CNN that Rick Santorum says it’s okay to cheat on taxes. On national television, this doesn’t surprise me, what does surprise me is that CNN allows him to lie and mislead the American people.”