Former Cruz aide and current CNN commentator Amanda Carpenter comments on the "ugly smear" the National Enquirer reported. The tabloid magazine ran a story accusing Cruz of having at least five extramarital affairs. Amanda Carpenter was rumored to be one of the mistresses. Carpenter told Jake Tapper in an interview Tuesday that she has never had anything but a professional relationship with the presidential candidate.
Carpenter also said she had no knowledge of allegations that Cruz was unfaithful to his wife.
Transcript, via CNN:
JAKE TAPPER, CNN HOST: Have you had ever any sort of intimate relationship with Senator Cruz, anything at all, anything that could be considered inappropriate?
AMANDA CARPENTER, CNN POLITICAL COMMENTATOR: No.
I had a purely professional relationship with Senator Cruz. And I want to go further than that. I have been 100 percent faithful to my husband. There's nothing more important to me than being a good wife and a good mother. And it's been very hard the past few days to have my character called into question and watch this blow back on them.
So, thank you for having me here to talk about it. And I hope no one else has to go through this.
TAPPER: This video that they put out, that the Trump campaign itself was pushing, it appears to show him not wearing a sports jacket and then like you're wearing a sports jacket or something. I don't really understand it. Did you understand it? Can you explain what they're trying to say?
CARPENTER: It's just -- it's conspiracy theories that are being pushed online.
I can't fathom why the Trump campaign would be doing this. No other campaign would touch this sort of stuff. It's really conspiracy theory. They're looking at every picture I have ever put out in my Instagram, rummaging through my personal life to find any kind of connection to me and this immoral behavior.
And so I don't want to run away from this. I want to address it. But, at the same time, the hardest thing about doing this is defending myself, but not making it worse.
CARPENTER: And so that's the weird conundrum that I found myself in, and so many other women who have to confront these sort of sexist smears.
I mean, you have to remember, I was one of five women that was just chosen at random, it seems, by "The National Enquirer." They put a barely pixelated image of me in their paper that everyone could quickly identify, largely because I'm fortunate to have a good media platform.
But, at the same time, I'm stuck in this box, where I am forced to try to defend every smear that comes after me, my husband, my children online or suffer in silence.
And so I just want to encourage everyone to look at the broader context of this campaign. There's a toxic culture being produced this season. And I think we all need to recognize what's happening, look at the facts, and go into this with our eyes wide open and be unafraid to confront it.