by WorldTribune Staff, October 15, 2018
President Donald Trump “won every segment” of his interview with Lesley Stahl which was broadcast Oct. 14 on “60 Minutes”, the chief TV critic from Variety said.
“By pushing through questions and by capitalizing on an interview approach seeking to synthesize his entire presidency into two segments of television, Trump effectively converted ’60 Minutes’ into a short rally,” Daniel D’Addario wrote for Variety.
“There are those who will see his rants as worthy, and those who will loathe them; whatever unity can be made to exist by the President exists only within those camps. That ’60 Minutes’ went looking for something greater is more proof than viewers needed that their approach to the President left them outmatched.”
Stahl asked Trump about “the scientists who say [the effects of climate change are] worse than ever,” but was unprepared to cite one, D’Addario noted.
The so-called mainstream interpretation of facts on topics such as climate change “seemed to be assumed on the part of the viewership at home, and the silences were filled by Trump, who explained away why orthodoxies were wrong while Stahl struggled to break into his monologues,” D’Addario wrote.
D’Addario continued: “Late in the interview, Stahl asked Trump what had been ‘the biggest surprise’ and what he had learned as President, a question unworthy of the occasion and of time that might have been spent fleshing out answers elsewhere. (The surprise is that politicians are ‘vicious,’ and the President went on.) Trump relentlessly talked over the follow-ups to a further question – why he didn’t bring the country together in the wake of the Kavanaugh hearings, seeking a moment of unity. That the President’s vanishingly rare appearance on a nonpartisan news program had resulted in a spectacle in which randomly assorted questions were bulldozed by a man eager to speak, and in which the interviewer generally left the viewers to decide what those answers meant without the benefit of meaningful follow-up, made the point clear.”
Stahl’s interview, D’Addario wrote, “felt like a missed opportunity that both so many ardent Trump fans and so many in the hazy middle tuned into an interview with the President and found so much of what was put to him phrased in loose, conversational terms.”