by WorldTribune Staff, June 28, 2017
The battle royal between the Trump administration and the major media outlets the president refers to as “fake news” has been amplified by a number of recent developments.
The White House, fresh from a Supreme Court victory that upheld President Donald Trump’s temporary travel ban, used the June 27 press briefing to play up a Project Veritas hidden-camera video in which a CNN producer called the network’s coverage of the Trump-Russia narrative “bullshit.”
The undercover video from James O’Keefe showed the producer suggesting CNN had buried other important stories had to keep the focus on Trump and Russia.
At the June 27 press briefing, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders encouraged viewers to watch the O’Keefe video, calling it “a disgrace to all of media, all of journalism.”
One media analyst said that CNN sunk to a new low in its war with the White House on June 26 in a story on the Supreme Court’s decision on Trump’s travel ban.
“Proving once again that during a month of extraordinary lows, CNN will always find a new barrel bottom, in the wake of President Trump’s 9-0 Supreme Court triumph, the leftwing cable news network decided to use popular Sesame Street puppet Elmo as a propaganda tool against President Trump’s temporary travel ban,” John Nolte wrote for The Daily Wire.
The segment “was clearly designed to emotionally blackmail American children, to twist them into unthinking beings who will see President Trump as a monster who hates children,” Nolte wrote.
Trump also went after The New York Times over a piece critical of the president’s handling of the healthcare debate.
Trump tweeted: “The failing @nytimes writes false story after false story about me. They don’t even call to verify the facts of a story. A Fake News Joke!” he tweeted. “Some of the Fake News Media likes to say that I am not totally engaged in healthcare. Wrong, I know the subject well & want victory for U.S.”
New York Times journalists took to Twitter to defend their coverage, according to a report by the Daily Mail.
“Glenn Thrush, the Times scribe whom White House insiders most love to hate, reacted to Trump’s claim that he and his colleagues ‘don’t even call to verify the facts of a story.’ ”
“Call your office, sir,” Thrush tweeted. ‘@nytimes spoke to many, many, many members of your staff yesterday – & ran everything by your team.’ ”
CNN was recently forced to retract a story alleging that one of Trump’s associates had improper dealings with a Kremlin-backed bank.
On a June 27 conference call with network officials, CNN President Jeff Zucker stressed that the network has to “play error-free ball” going forward, as all mistakes will be magnified.
“He’s been saying it for months, it’s just unfortunate because there is no more room for mess-ups,” a second source at CNN told The Hill.
CNN also recently had to walk back a report authored by its top network talent, including anchor Jake Tapper and political analyst Gloria Borger, stating that former FBI Director James Comey would refute Trump’s claims that he was not the target of an investigation, the Hill report said.
In testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Comey confirmed that he told Trump three times that he was not the target of an investigation.
“I think this is the day when the left rues ever coming up with the phrase ‘fake news,’ because now we have the evidence,” Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka said during a Breitbart podcast on June 27. “We have the consequences of systematic generation of fake news happening at the epicenter of one of the places that was producing the most of it.”
The CNN source responded: “They’ve made it fairly clear they view this as a war. We view it as determination to seek truth and hold the powerful accountable regardless of how difficult they try to make it.”