Donald Trump's 60 Minutes walkout draws comparisons with contentious CNN interview 30 years ago

Donald Trump's abrupt departure from a contentious 60 Minutes interview last week has drawn parallels with his dramatic exit from a CNN interview 30 years ago, the footage of which has been unearthed by the channel.

The President cut short an interview with CBS journalist Lesley Stahl last Tuesday after taking exception to her suggestion that his online behaviour was "turning off" voters. After some bitter back-and-forth - which included the President lamenting that Stahl's colleagues had taken a more delicate approach to his Democratic rival, Joe Biden - he announced he was finished with the interview and took his leave.

The highly-publicised walkout has drawn comparisons with another combative appearance by the President more than 30 years ago. During an interview with CNN correspondent Charles Feldman on March 29, 1990, the business magnate became defensive when Feldman posed a certain line of questioning, and resorted to a few of his now favoured words when describing the media - "negative", "false" and "unfair".

"The media is so protected, and it's ridiculous that they're so protected, but they can write virtually anything. The difference is with me, at least they pay some price. I think more people should have that attitude and I think you'd find a lot more accurate reporting - including yours," a 43-year-old Trump told Feldman.

"What was inaccurate so far?" the journalist asked.

"I thought your demeanour was inaccurate. I thought that the questions you were posing to people in my organisation were inaccurate and false and unfair," Trump said.

"Well, questions by definition can't be inaccurate, they're questions," Feldman fired back.

"The questions themselves were put in such a way that made them statements and they became statements as opposed to questions and I think that's not good reporting."

When Feldman pressed Trump to give an example, the real estate tycoon said his viewers wouldn't be interested and he didn't want to "embarrass" the journalist.

Feldman then began questioning Trump on the viability of his casinos in Atlantic City, a topic he said had been discussed with his subject prior to the interview. Trump interjected that the questioning was "negative" before telling the journalist to do the interview with "somebody else". He then rips off his microphone and drops it on the table, where it falls to the floor. 

"Frankly, you're a very negative guy and I think it's very unfair reporting. Good luck," he says, briefly shaking Feldman's hand before walking out.

In footage released by CBS after the airing of the 60 Minutes interview on Sunday (local time), Trump accuses Stahl of "inappropriately" bringing up subjects, to which she fired back that she had warned him he would face "tough questions".

"Excuse me, Lesley, you started with me. Your first statement was, 'are you ready for tough questions?' That's no way to talk," Trump told her.

When a producer reminded Stahl of the remaining time, Trump turned to his aide and said: "I think we have enough of an interview. Okay? That's enough. Let's go."

In an attempt to undermine CBS, Trump then breached his agreement with the network and shared an unedited, single-frame recording of the interview - taken for White House archival purposes - on social media ahead of the broadcast date. He also launched a Twitter tirade against Stahl and 60 Minutes, posting several tweets criticising Stahl's conduct and branding the interview as "fake" and "biased".

He also complained that Stahl had not worn a mask, illustrating his claim with a selective clip of their discussion immediately after the interview. CBS countered that Stahl, who returned a negative COVID test prior to her meeting with the President, had been masked at all times except during and briefly after the interview.

The incumbent Republican President will compete for his second term in office against Democratic presidential candidate, Joe Biden, in the November 3 election.