On Wednesday’s NBC Today, co-host Savannah Guthrie began an interview with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer by suggesting that President Trump’s performance during Tuesday night’s address to Congress was all an act: “Before we get to the substance of the speech, and we will, let's talk about this decisive change in the President's tone. To borrow another political phrase, is this a kinder, gentler Donald Trump and do you buy it?”
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.
In the second part of this live interview with House Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer suggested that the Republican leader did not hold a town hall meeting in his home district of Wisconsin to avoid left-wing protesters who may flood the event: “...you didn't hold a town hall meeting when you were home, did you?...Did you not this particular time because of what's been happening to some Republican members of Congress?”
During a live interview with House Speaker Paul Ryan on Tuesday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer refused to accept the fact that ObamaCare was in a state of collapse. After Ryan listed the numerous problems with the health care law, Lauer responded with liberal talking points: “I just want to say that a lot of people disagree with that terminology that ObamaCare is collapsing under its own weight.”
A newly released NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll found that 51% of Americans think the media have been “too critical” in their coverage of President Trump. That number was eight times larger than the 6% of the public who thought the press hadn’t been critical enough of the new administration. 41% said the news coverage has been objective.
In an exclusive interview with George W. Bush on Monday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer repeatedly urged the former president to criticize current President Trump’s first month in office. Lauer began the exchange by demanding: “You took office in 2001 after an extremely contentious election, controversial end to that, the Supreme Court decided it, the nation was incredibly divided. How would you compare the divisions we faced then to what we’re living through right now?”
During a report for Friday’s NBC Today, rural Wisconsin Trump supporters repeatedly frustrated attempts by political analyst Nicolle Wallace to get them to criticize President Trump. The flummoxed journalist noted: “On this farm, the President gets plenty of pasture, even for the controversial travel ban.”
On Thursday, The New York Times launched a new marketing campaign by releasing a TV ad set to air during Sunday’s Academy Awards with the tag line, “The truth is more important than ever,” seemingly taking a jab at President Donald Trump. Given the paper’s blatant liberal bias and willingness to report fake news stories, the notion that the Times is the arbiter of the “truth” is laughable.
On Thursday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer accused Donald Trump of reversing an Obama administration school transgender policy just to appease conservative activists gathering at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference: “Or is the timing more tied to the fact that CPAC starts today? Conservatives around the country coming for a victory party and he wants to fire up that base.”
On Wednesday, NBC’s Today and CBS This Morning both hailed liberal protesters “sounding off” at congressional town hall meetings “to put the breaks on President Trump's agenda” and giving Republican lawmakers an “earful.” In 2009, the same networks warned similar public meetings were “getting out of hand” when “unruly” Tea Party demonstrators spoke out against the Obama administration.
At the top of her 12 p.m. ET hour MSNBC show on Tuesday, anchor Andrea Mitchell enthusiastically touted liberal protesters showing up to congressional town hall meetings: “Republican Congress members getting an earful back home as they prepare to rollout their plan to repeal ObamaCare.” However, back in 2010, Mitchell was frightened by such “angry” displays by Tea Party demonstrators attending public meetings with Democratic lawmakers.
After all three of Monday’s network evening newscasts hyped left-wing “Not My Presidents’ Day” protests across the country, on Tuesday, the ABC, CBS, and NBC morning shows took the anti-Trump fervor international as they promoted similar demonstrations in London and the British Parliament debating whether or not President Trump should be permitted a state visit to the U.K.
Monday’s network morning shows were aghast at President Trump continuing to criticize the liberal media with a Friday tweet in which he labeled them “fake news” and “the enemy of the American people.” In response, the ABC, NBC, and CBS broadcasts accused him of “declaring an all-out war on journalists” and compared Trump to Richard Nixon in the midst of Watergate.
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.”
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.”