CNN’s Reliable Sources Blasts Fox News Ties to Trump Administration in Excruciating Detail
“You know they’re close. But do you realize just how close?” That’s the question Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter asked today of his audience, referring to the cozy relationship and extensive ties between President Donald Trump and the Fox News network. It’s very, very close, as Stelter then outlines in detail, calling it “unprecedented.”
“It’s sort of a love story,’ says Stelter of the Fox-Trump alliance, “so let me count the ways.”
“First of all, the president loves Fox. He loves what he hears on Fox. He promotes the network and trashes its rivals, telling people when and where to tune in. A president has never endorsed a network like this before,” Stelter accurately observed. “Trump watches Fox and tweets about it and watches some more.”
This is factual and not in dispute. Trump does love Fox and he says so. He tweets when the shows will be on, encourages people to watch them, and frequently tweets out quotes from the hosts and opinion contributors, who are uniformly fans of Trump in return.
“You can see how this back scratching benefits both sides,” Stelter explains. “Trump benefits from Fox’s friendly segments and softball questions, and then Fox benefits from Trump’s preferential treatment and constant promos.”
Again, this is factual and obvious. It is important to note that none of those statements are opinion. These are things that demonstrably happen on the record.
Stelter moves on from describing the nature of the relationship into outlining the details of it.
Stelter mentions the obvious, that Sean Hannity, who endorsed Trump and is open about their friendship, praises Trump on the air regularly while viciously bashing anyone who criticizes his friend. Stelter points out that it extends to more than that.
“When [Fox News host Sean Hannity] is off the air, he gossips with Trump and gives advice about who to hire,’ he says. “So let’s just underscore how weird this is. No TV host has ever had this kind of relationship with a U.S. President before. And to take it a step further, no network has ever propped up a president quite like this before.”
Anticipating the comparisons, Stelter says that, “sure, Obama had big fans on MSNBC, but there wasn’t this kind of constant coordination. No one ever thought Keith Olbermann was Obama’s shadow chief of staff, but that’s how some Trump advisers describe Hannity.”
Stelter did not mention CNN’s own favorable coverage of Obama and aggressively negative coverage of Trump. He noted the relationship between Trump and Fox’s Rupert Murdoch.
“He has tweeted or retweeted about Fox more than a thousand times, and he has become close to Fox uber boss Robert Murdoch who was once openly critical of Trump. The two men talk weekly, sometimes daily according to The Washington Post” said Stelter, who then compared parent company merger news. He went on, though, describing the relationship with Fox News in detail.
Stelter goes down the list. Besides Hannity and Murdoch, there is Kimberly Guilfoyle, who is dating Donald Trump Jr., Lou Dobbs and Jeanine Pirro, who both speak with Trump on policy and even potential administration jobs, Pete Hegseth and Laura Ingraham, who were considered for posts, and Heather Nauert, Mercedes Schlapp, who actually got jobs.
Stelter somewhat disingenuously also mentions John Bolton, whose long career with government, expertise on foreign policy, and in particular direct involvement with U.S.-North Korea sanctions made him an obvious choice for the administration, regardless of Fox News. Still, it is quite a list.
Stelter then addresses the Bill Shine story at length, challenging Fox reporters to their jobs, before concluding that it is just one more sign of the “Fox/trump merger.”
Watch the clip above, courtesy of CNN.
[Featured image via screengrab]
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