The Sunday following the anti-President Donald Trump Women’s March on Washington, network news rushed to spin the event as an inclusive event about putting the president on notice. “[Trump will] be confronting images, however, like this,” hyped Paula Farris on Good Morning America, “Hundreds of thousands of women, and men, hitting the streets.” There was no talk of the obscene parts of Ashley Judd’s hate filled tirade nor Madonna’s fantasy of “blowing up the White House,” only a fleeting mention on NBC.
The day after Donald Trump became the 45th president of the United States, NBC News stoked fears for the next four years by hyping protests from around the world and portrayed Russia as the only country celebrating. “Protests not only taking place here in the United States but around the world as well, from Tokyo to Berlin to Manila, and London as well,” announced co-anchor Craig Melvin Saturday on Today, leading into a ridiculous report by chief global correspondent Bill Neely.
On January 13, a judge in Houston, Texas sentenced Alexandria Vera to ten years in prison. Her crime? The 24-year-old teacher at Stovall Middle School struck up a sexual relationship with a 13-year-old student – almost daily, she said, for nine months – but with the parents’ approval. She could be eligible for parole in five years. She even became pregnant by the boy. When child-protection workers closed in, she got an abortion. Unsurprisingly, the boy is now in foster care.
One would assume this story of a sexual predator would be plastered all over the national news. Isn’t this the kind of crusading story full of human interest and melodrama? Apparently not. ABC, CBS, and NBC couldn’t be bothered.
Friday's NBC Nightly News hyped how President Donald Trump supposedly lobbed "verbal grenades" in his inauguration address, as Hallie Jackson put it. Chuck Todd contended that the speech was "shockingly divisive for an inaugural," and quickly added that it was "unnecessarily divisive." Todd later underlined that Trump "insulted almost every living president that was there...which, to me, was so stunning." On CBS Evening News, Scott Pelley emphasized that "inauguration speeches are always about binding the wounds of the election and bringing the country together — and that's not what happened today."
During NBC’s live special Inauguration Day coverage on Friday morning, ahead of Donald Trump taking the oath of office, Meet the Press moderator Chuck Todd warned that the new president “needs to earn this honeymoon” and “ missed some opportunities these last six to eight weeks...to just erase the asterisk” of his election.
ABC journalist Terry Moran on Friday offered a sneering, dark take on Donald Trump’s inaugural address, trashing its “ugly echoes” to the rise of Nazi Germany. Regarding the President’s assertion that, “From this day forward, it’s going to be only America first,” Moran slimed, “It carries with it overtones from the 1930s when an anti-Semitic movement saying, ‘We don't want to get involved in Europe's war. It's the Jews fault in Germany!’”
In back-to-back interviews on NBC’s Today and CBS This Morning on Friday, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer was largely treated to softball questions that allowed him to advance the Democratic Party’s strategy to obstruct President-elect Donald Trump’s agenda.
On Friday’s NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer revealed his biggest fear regarding the upcoming Inauguration of Donald Trump: “I don't want to put ideas in anyone's mind, but hypothetically speaking, you have his core supporters out on the mall, and they’re going to be listening to his speech, and they’re going to look up on that podium, or next to it, and see Hillary Clinton....And what are the fears that they may react in a vocal way toward her, mimicking some of the things that have been said during the campaign?”
As Donald Trump is inaugurated the 45th president today, it’s not likely that the three networks will suggest that seagulls were “awed” by the “sacred” event, one that “pilgrims” trekked to Washington to see. But that happened on January 20, 2009 as Barack Obama became the 44th president. ABC, CBS and NBC reporters were beside themselves and compared the event to a religious experience.
NBC closed out Thursday’s edition of Nightly News with an over-the-top tribute to President Barack Obama where they dubbed him ‘father-in-chief.’ “President Obama prepares to leave the White House, he's written a letter to the American people thanking them for making him, quote ‘a better man,’” touted anchor Lester Holt, “In the past, he’s also said the presidency has made him a better dad.” Reporter Chris Jansing dug up old photographs of the president as she hyped the hashtag #ObamaAndKids.
MRC Vice President of Business and Culture Dan Gainor denounced NBC’s attempt to downplay President-elect Donald Trump’s role in bringing new jobs to the U.S. On Twitter, Trump credited himself for new job creation on Jan. 17. The next day, NBC’s Today ran a “fact check” on Trump’s claim with MSNBC’s Chief Legal Correspondent Ari Melber, who said Trump had a “very small or non-existent” impact.
A Thursday report on NBC’s Today featured the on-screen headline: “The Fear of the Unknown; Hispanics & Muslims Look Ahead to New Administration.” Correspondent Gadi Schwartz began the segment by fretting over the fate of illegal immigrants: “Like hundreds of thousands across the country, Perla Berazza was a student with a secret and a constant fear....she qualified for the Deferred Action Childhood Arrival program created by President Obama....But the program, known as DACA, is in the cross-hairs of President-elect Donald Trump.”