john podesta ufos tapper sot lead_00003414.jpg
PHOTO: CNN
john podesta ufos tapper sot lead_00003414.jpg
Now playing
01:15
Could we learn more about Area 51 from Hillary Clinton?
aliens
PHOTO: AFP/Getty Images
aliens
Now playing
00:56
Do the Clintons believe in aliens?
Area 51 family land vs military orig_00013712.jpg
Area 51 family land vs military orig_00013712.jpg
Now playing
02:32
Family fights to keep home in 'Area 51'
UFO hunters Las Vegas area 51 origwx JM GR_00030412.jpg
UFO hunters Las Vegas area 51 origwx JM GR_00030412.jpg
Now playing
03:18
How Nevada's UFO hunters view the 2016 race
hln sot clinton aliens kimmel_00001419.jpg
hln sot clinton aliens kimmel_00001419.jpg
Now playing
00:36
Clinton: Not surprised if aliens exist
erin simon area 51 is real_00010325.jpg
erin simon area 51 is real_00010325.jpg
Now playing
02:11
Area 51 is real, but sorry, no aliens

Story highlights

Podesta has made his interest in the possibility of alien life well known

"The American people can handle the truth," Podesta said

(CNN) —  

There has long been an air of conspiracy surrounding theories of alien life, and the head of Hillary Clinton’s campaign said Thursday it’s time to do away with the secrecy.

CNN’s Jake Tapper pulled aside Clinton campaign chair John Podesta, who was a guest on “The Lead,” to talk aliens.

“The U.S. government could do a much better job in answering the quite legitimate questions that people have about what’s going on with unidentified aerial phenomena,” Podesta said.

Podesta has made his interest in the possibility of alien life and conspiratorial leanings toward Area 51 well known. During his time serving in the Obama administration, Podesta tweeted, “Finally, my biggest failure of 2014: Once again not securing the #disclosure of the UFO files. #thetruthisstilloutthere cc: @NYTimesDowd.”

Clinton herself pledged in January to “get to the bottom” of whether rumors of U.S. contact with extraterrestrial life were true.

In regard to Area 51, Podesta echoed Clinton’s call, saying, “What I’ve talked to the secretary about, and what she’s said now in public, is that if she’s elected president, when she gets into office, she’ll ask for as many records as the United States federal government has to be declassified, and I think that’s a commitment that she intends to keep and that I intend to hold her to.”

01:13 - Source: CNN
States can actually limit free speech on Election Day
electioneering explainer danny cevallos orig_00001425.jpg
electioneering explainer danny cevallos orig_00001425.jpg
Now playing
01:13
States can actually limit free speech on Election Day
U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks during a campaign rally with democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at University of New Hampshire on September 28, 2016 in Durham, New Hampshire.
PHOTO: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) speaks during a campaign rally with democratic presidential nominee former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at University of New Hampshire on September 28, 2016 in Durham, New Hampshire.
Now playing
03:00
Remembering the campaigns we lost
PHOTO: Getty Images
Now playing
02:10
They made it to the White House despite scandals
history of the october surprise foreman ac pkg_00005811.jpg
PHOTO: Getty Images
history of the october surprise foreman ac pkg_00005811.jpg
Now playing
02:14
The history of the October surprise
Now playing
04:02
36 years of election nights on CNN
Now playing
01:15
Watch 10 elections get called on CNN in one minute
hillary clinton rally daytona beach fbi investigation sot_00002801.jpg
PHOTO: CNN
hillary clinton rally daytona beach fbi investigation sot_00002801.jpg
Now playing
00:57
Clinton calls FBI director's actions unprecedented
trump voter id podesta fact check origwx bw_00004624.jpg
trump voter id podesta fact check origwx bw_00004624.jpg
Now playing
02:16
Fact check: Trump on undocumented immigrants and voting
hillary clinton rally time lapse origwx bw_00004417.jpg
hillary clinton rally time lapse origwx bw_00004417.jpg
Now playing
01:21
Hillary Clinton's historic night in time-lapse
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 23:  Anthony Weiner, a leading candidate for New York City mayor, stands with his wife Huma Abedin during a press conference on July 23, 2013 in New York City. Weiner addressed news of new allegations that he engaged in lewd online conversations with a woman after he resigned from Congress for similar previous incidents.  (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
PHOTO: John Moore/Getty Images North America/Getty Images
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 23: Anthony Weiner, a leading candidate for New York City mayor, stands with his wife Huma Abedin during a press conference on July 23, 2013 in New York City. Weiner addressed news of new allegations that he engaged in lewd online conversations with a woman after he resigned from Congress for similar previous incidents. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Now playing
02:01
Clinton's history with Anthony Weiner
Many North Carolina voters remain undecided in upcoming presidential election_00001405.jpg
PHOTO: CNN
Many North Carolina voters remain undecided in upcoming presidential election_00001405.jpg
Now playing
02:15
Some North Carolina voters hesitant to pick a candidate
joe biden hillary clinton election intv sot smerconish _00000000.jpg
PHOTO: CNN
joe biden hillary clinton election intv sot smerconish _00000000.jpg
Now playing
00:46
Biden: I thought I could beat Hillary Clinton
cnnee pkg rodriguez clinton global iniciative hillary emails_00002301.jpg
cnnee pkg rodriguez clinton global iniciative hillary emails_00002301.jpg
Now playing
02:47
Hillary Clinton's explanations of her email saga
PHOTO: The Guardian
Now playing
01:17
Gary Johnson snaps at reporter
Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and US Vice President Joe Biden acknowledge the crowd at Riverfront Sports athletic facility on August 15, 2016 in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
PHOTO: Mark Makela/Getty Images North America
Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and US Vice President Joe Biden acknowledge the crowd at Riverfront Sports athletic facility on August 15, 2016 in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
Now playing
01:26
Biden on Clinton's Secretary of State list?