(CNSNews.com) - Chuck Todd, host of NBC's "Meet the Press," almost laughed at Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) when Cruz told him he believes Ukraine did try to influence the 2016 election.
Cruz said the liberal media is complicit in suggesting that only Russia interfered.
"Do you believe Ukraine meddled in the American election in 2016?" Todd asked Cruz on Sunday.
"I do. And I think there is considerable evidence," Cruz responded.
"You do?!" Todd asked incredulously, eyes widening in surprise as he broke into a smile.
Democrats and liberal media outlets have denounced such a notion as Russian propaganda.
Todd, noting that Donald Trump vilified Sen. Cruz during the primary, asked Cruz, "Is it not possible that this president is capable of creating a false narrative about somebody in order to help him politically?"
"Except that's not what happened," Cruz responded. "The president released the transcript of the (Ukraine) phone call. You can read what was said on the phone call.
Chuck, let me point out a game that the media is playing. A question that you've asked a number of people is, you've said to senators, sort of aghast -- 'Do you believe that Ukraine and not Russia interfered in the election?' Now that, in a court of law, would be struck as a misleading question. Of course, Russia interfered in our election. Nobody looking at the evidence disputes that...Russia clearly interfered in our election.
On the evidence, Russia clearly interfered in our election. But here's the game the media is playing. Because Russia interfered, the media pretends nobody else did. Ukraine blatantly interfered in our election. The sitting ambassador from Ukraine wrote an op-ed blasting Donald Trump during the election season. That is unusual.
Todd indicated that Ukraine ambassador was upset about Trump's comments about Ukraine and Crimea.
"So," Cruz told Todd, "You're saying they had disagreements with Donald Trump and they wanted Hillary Clinton to get elected."
Todd responded that an op-ed by the Ukrainian ambassador is nothing compared with what the Russians did.
"Chuck, Chuck, I understand that you want to dismiss Ukrainian interference because, (a), they were trying to get Hillary Clinton elected, which is what the vast majority of the media wanted anyway; and (b), it's inconvenient for the narrative.
"You know, it's hysterical -- two years ago, there was article after article after article in the mainstream media about Ukrainian interference in the elections, but now, the Democrats have no evidence of a crime, no evidence of violating the law. And so suddenly, Ukraine interference is treated as the media clutches their pearls, oh my goodness, you can't say that.
Cruz told Todd, "The press needs to stop being ridiculous and just -- and acting like they work for Adam Schiff."
Todd said Russia is trying to use the story of Ukraine interference to deflect attention from its own activities:
But Cruz told Todd:
I have been in multiple briefings, year after year after year, about foreign interference in our election. Russia has tried to interfere in our elections. China has tried to interfere in our elections. North Korea has tried to interfere in our election. Ukraine has tried to interfere in our elections.
This is not new. 2016 is not the first year they did it, and they are going to keep trying. And so we need to be strong in dealing with it.
But the media needs to actually report facts. This is a kangaroo court in the House. They're going to impeach not because they have the evidence but because they hate the president and want to re-do the election, but it's going to go to the Senate. It's going to go nowhere. I think the American people know this is a waste of time. And this is Democrats putting on a circus.