01:58 - Source: CNN
Reality check: Kaine accuses Trump of insults

Story highlights

Sen. Jeff Session said Mike Pence 'stayed on the key issues' during the vice presidential debate

Tim Kaine grilled the Indiana governor over his running mate's positions

CNN —  

As one of Donald Trump’s earliest and strongest backers on Capitol Hill, Jeff Sessions knows a thing or two about defending the Republican nominee.

So does the Alabama senator think Mike Pence failed Trump on that front at the vice presidential debate? Not at all.

“What Pence did and why he won this debate was he refused to be distracted,” Sessions said Wednesday morning on CNN’s “New Day.” “He stayed on the key issues of the debate.”

RELATED: 5 takeaways from the vice presidential debate

Some observers suggested Pence, the Indiana governor, could have defended Trump more than he did at Tuesday night’s debate. Time and time again, Pence was challenged by both his sparring partner, Democratic vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine, and the moderator, Elaine Quijano, to defend the real estate mogul’s controversial comments and proposals.

“I can’t imagine how Gov. Pence can defend the insult-driven, selfish ‘me first’ style of Donald Trump,” Kaine said, after rattling off a host of Trump’s controversies, including his past claims that President Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States.

Pence responded by accusing the Democratic ticket of engaging in “an insult-driven campaign” before turning his focus to what he said were Clinton and Obama’s foreign policy failures.

RELATED: Pence goes further than Trump on Syria military action

Sessions, the first US senator to endorse Trump, said on CNN that Pence and others are often asked to defend too much.

“You have a question from the media or from Tim Kaine with 10 different charges in it,” Sessions said, “and there’s no way the respondent can actually address each one.”