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Distraction? Trump Tweets Cable News Ratings Amidst Extensive Coverage of Border Crisis

President Donald Trump aimed to bring attention to the cable news wars, by sharing with his massive Twitter following Sunday ratings of cable news shows. Trump retweeted Fox Business’ host Maria Bartiromo’s self-congratulatory tweet which included a screenshot of Sunday ratings in which Fox News dominated.

What was airing on cable news morning shows just before that tweet was sent? Both CNN’s New Day and MSNBC’s Morning Joe had either just wrapped or were in the middle of a deep dive into the heartbreaking image of a dead migrant father and his two-year-old child who had drowned while attempting to cross the Rio Grande to enter the United States, reportedly to escape poverty and find a better life for their child.

Trump has long been a fan of Fox News, who’s opinion programs offer a consistent and full-throated defense of the Trump administration, and a frequent critic of coverage and news reports from CNN and MSNBC. Not surprisingly, he lauded Fox News for  doing “great in the ratings” and claiming CNN to be “dead as a doornail” and MSNBC “dying fast.”

Trump tweeted:

Both CNN and MSNBC appear to have made the editorial decision to share the graphic photo to illustrate the tragedy at the border, though it’s not yet clear how the death of father and child represents new border policy from the Trump administration.

One could argue that the Trump administration’s decision to cut humanitarian aid to an already unstable Central America led these to flee, but the preponderance of cable coverage has focused on the Trump administration’s draconian policy of child separation, the reported “slow-playing” of asylum seekers, and the deplorable conditions provided for separated children.

Trump continued on his Twitter jag, and as of the publishing of this post, has tweeted or retweeted nearly two dozen missives that have ranged in topics from Hatch Act hearings, his administration’s newly announced Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham and Vice President Mike Pence’s recent address at the “Latinos for Trump” event in Miami Tuesday.

Update: Trump did add a tweet about the border immigration policy at the end of his 20+ tweet tweetstorm in which he predictably blamed the Democrats:

(Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

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