Appearing on Fox News’s Outnumbered on Friday, former United Nations ambassador John Bolton blasted NBC’s Chuck Todd for taking to Twitter on Thursday to attack President Trump’s “un-American” criticism of the media during a press conference: “I thought that tweet was one of the most foolish things I've seen from the media in a long time, and you know, that's a pretty low bar there. The media is not entitled to worship.”
Kyle Drennen is the Media Research Center's Senior News Analyst and a Contributing Editor to NewsBusters. He is the co-author of the 2014 Media Reality Check study, TV News Blacks Out This Year’s Bad Election News for Democrats.
In 2009, he captured the infamous comment from then-Newsweek editor Evan Thomas comparing President Obama to God. Later that same year, he exposed for MSNBC deceptively editing video footage of a Tea Party rally to conceal the racial identity of an African American participant, forcing the liberal network to respond to criticism and explain its actions.
His media analysis has been cited by nationally syndicated radio hosts Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin, as well as media outlets including Fox News, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.com, The Washington Times, Washington Examiner, Politico, National Review, among others.
Kyle joined the MRC in 2007 after graduating from Providence College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and political science. He lives in Northern Virginia and can be contacted via email at email@example.com.
On Friday, the broadcast networks continued their hyperventilating over President Trump taking on the media during his Thursday press conference. All three morning shows were beside themselves as hosts and correspondents breathlessly hurled one sensational adjective after another to describe the event, including: “raucous,” “combative,” “shocking,” “jaw-dropping,” “unhinged,” and “astonishing.”
During ABC News special report coverage following President Trump’s press conference on Thursday, anchor George Stephanopoulos seemed to be in a state of shock over the commander-in-chief’s hostility to the liberal media: “What a remarkable window into the state of mind of the President of the United States right there....lashed out at the press, made it very clear he thinks the press is dishonest....never seen anything like that.”
On Thursday, NBC’s Today fretted over Congress reversing a discriminatory gun regulation put in place under the Obama administration that broadly banned anyone receiving mental disability Social Security benefits from buying a firearm. Despite the overturn legislation receiving bipartisan support, even from the American Civil Liberties Union, the morning show hyped “controversy” over the “heartless” move.
On Wednesday, the network morning shows declared a “White House in crisis” amid the fallout from the resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and a New York Times report on Trump campaign officials having contact with Russia during the presidential race. While those “bombshell” stories garnered 36 minutes 17 seconds of air time on the broadcasts, only a scant 2 minutes 2 seconds was featured on criticism of the serious national security leaks that fueled both stories.
In its latest cover story, Variety conducted a rare joint interview with all three network evening news anchors, Lester Holt of NBC Nightly News, David Muir of ABC’s World News Tonight, and Scott Pelley of CBS Evening News. Writer Brian Steinberg fawned over the trio of liberal media fixtures: “At a time when President Trump rails against the ‘dishonest’ media, and ‘fake news’ labels make consumers wary of the facts that do come their way, the venerable evening newscasts stand apart.”
During her 12 p.m. ET hour MSNBC show on Tuesday, host Andrea Mitchell interrupted her panel of guests to go to live coverage of House Democratic Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi ranting about the resignation of National Security Adviser Michael Flynn at a press conference. In her comments, the left-wing lawmaker cited a fake Twitter account purporting to be Flynn.
Appearing on MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell Reports on Monday, Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy called out the host’s biased reporting in real time, ripping slanted segments that aired just moments earlier: “I personally think the biggest problem is the media attacks on the President. Just in the past 20 minutes listening to this show on [MS]NBC, we get the feeling the President is not appointing women, which is not true.”
During an interview with Patriots owner Robert Kraft about his NFL team’s Super Bowl win, on Monday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer turned the conversation to politics and demanded Kraft defend his friendship with President Trump: “Your relationship with Donald Trump, I should mention, goes back a while.... Has your relationship with Donald Trump in any way strained your relationship with some of your players? Who, by the way, some say they don't want to go to the White House to celebrate this win.”
On Friday’s NBC Today, political analyst Nicolle Wallace seemed surprised that Trump voters had not yet abandoned their support of the President. After talking to some of his backers in Erie County, Pennsylvania, Wallace proclaimed: “If you're looking for buyers' remorse, you won't find it here.”
In a friendly chat with actress and left-wing activist Lena Dunham on Friday’s NBC Today, substitute co-host Maria Shriver lobbed one softball after another while promoting the final season of HBO’s Girls. Dunham, in turn, praised liberal young women for practicing “identity politics” and denounced the “xenophobia” of the Trump administration.
On Thursday, both NBC’s Today and ABC’s Good Morning America gleefully touted a new “rallying cry” among Democrats and liberal activists in the wake of Republicans admonishing Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren for attacking Attorney General Jeff Sessions on the Senate floor ahead of his confirmation vote.
During an appearance on Fox News Monday night, former CNN host Piers Morgan offered a stunning rebuke to the media, calling out them out for being “in the tank of Hillary Clinton” during the 2016 campaign and openly hostile to President Trump after “their candidate didn’t win.” He then demanded that press show the commander-in-chief “more respect.”
On Wednesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer feared that President Trump was only focused on pleasing his supporters rather than reaching out to “the entire country.” Political analyst Nicolle Wallace voiced similar concerns and urged the Republican to move left.
Before Vice President Mike Pence delivered the tie-breaking vote in the Senate to confirm President Trump’s Education Secretary nominee Betsy DeVos during the noon ET hour on Tuesday, all three network morning shows heralded Democratic senators pulling an “all-nighter” in an attempt to obstruct her confirmation.
On Monday, NBC Today co-host Matt Lauer provided Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson a nationally televised platform to tout his fight against President Trump’s immigration order temporarily restricting immigration from seven Middle Eastern countries. Without challenge, Lauer allowed the Democratic politician to accuse Trump of having “violated the Constitution in very fundamental ways.”
On Monday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer and substitute co-host Maria Shriver led a panel discussion reviewing some of Sunday night’s Super Bowl commercials and gushed over the “social awareness” of ads that pushed liberal agenda items like environmental activism, equal pay, and illegal immigration.
At the top of Friday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer touted an exclusive: “Caroline Kennedy speaks out in her first interview since stepping down as the U.S. Ambassador to Japan. This morning, her take on the Trump administration's very different approach to foreign policy and her own future. Is she planning a run for office?”
On Thursday, NBC’s Today devoted nearly three minutes of air time to a report touting Hillary Clinton’s “return to the spotlight” and “re-emergence” on the public stage “With some big plans, including a new book and a series of speeches...”
Appearing on Thursday’s NBC Today, political analyst Mark Halperin worried that Republican President Donald Trump was behaving like...well, a Republican. Talking about the coming fight in the Senate to confirm Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch, Halperin lamented: “...right now Donald Trump is governing as a Republican president, not as an independent. And if he does a scorecard of his first few weeks in office and says, ‘Am I living up to my goal, my promise to unite the country?’ Right now he’s not.”