MSNBC Hopes Mueller Report Hearings Reach Fox News Viewers

While promoting the upcoming hearings on the Mueller Report orchestrated by House Democrats, on Monday afternoon, MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle feared that the partisan stunt would be unsuccessful in “moving the needle” of public opinion against President Trump. In the discussion that followed, correspondent Heidi Przybyla particularly fretted over the influence of Fox News in shaping media coverage of the investigation.  

“Heidi, based on your reporting, do you believe these hearings....do you believe that Democrats are sort of setting the table to an audience that already believes this?,” Ruhle worried. As she continued, the host desperately hoped that Trump’s supporters would change their minds: “Is anything happening in the coming days that will have Republicans tuning in, moving the needle or getting more of the American public to start to see, ‘Hey, maybe we need to do something different’?”

 

 

Referring to guest Jill Wine-Banks, a former Watergate prosecutor, Przybyla warned: “Ask Jill what the difference between Watergate and today is. One of the big differences, that you didn’t have such bifurcated media, you didn’t have a Fox News, which may or may not cover these hearings.”

The reporter assured viewers that they would get the truth if they just stuck with “mainstream” media sources: “So, yes, if you’re watching some of the mainstream channels and you’re getting your information from the mainstream newspapers, you may know a lot of the things that have already been reported in the Mueller Report.”

Przybyla concluded: “So it’s still an open question as to whether these hearings are gonna be sustainable enough to, you know, draw a sustained media focus where it reaches some of these other American citizens who maybe aren’t familiar with what’s in the report.”

Ironically, MSNBC’s audience would not see a single moment of live hearing coverage on Monday due to breaking news coverage of a deadly helicopter crash in Manhattan.

In an attempt to bolster her argument against Fox News, Przybyla cited an attendee of a recent town hall with Republican Michigan Congressman Justin Amash:

We had a woman on this network just several days ago who said she thought there was nothing bad in the Mueller Report for President Trump. So it’s still very much an open question whether these hearings are gonna reach the people who aren’t familiar with what’s in the report.

Ruhle was equally horrified as she recalled the incident: “It was a woman who was at Justin Amash’s town hall who gets all of her news from conservative television and radio and she said, ‘I was under the impression the Mueller Report completely exonerated the President’....Because he said so.”

Earlier Monday morning, Ruhle and Przybyla were part of MSNBC’s coverage wondering whether Democrats would be able to “keep the drum beat going” on the Mueller investigation.

Here is a transcript of the June 10 afternoon exchange between them:

1:08 PM ET

(...)

STEPHANIE RUHLE: Heidi, based on your reporting, do you believe these hearings – Jill [Wine-Banks] points out the importance of why so many people need to listen and learn – do you believe that Democrats are sort of setting the table to an audience that already believes this? Is anything happening in the coming days that will have Republicans tuning in, moving the needle or getting more of the American public to start to see, “Hey, maybe we need to do something different”?

HEIDI PRZYBYLA: You raise a very important question, Steph. Ask Jill what the difference between Watergate and today is. One of the big differences, that you didn’t have such bifurcated media, you didn’t have a Fox News, which may or may not cover these hearings. So, yes, if you’re watching some of the mainstream channels and you’re getting your information from the mainstream newspapers, you may know a lot of the things that have already been reported in the Mueller Report.

So it’s still an open question as to whether these hearings are gonna be sustainable enough to, you know, draw a sustained media focus where it reaches some of these other American citizens who maybe aren’t familiar with what’s in the report. We had a woman on this network just several days ago who said she thought there was nothing bad in the Mueller Report for President Trump. So it’s still very much an open question whether these hearings are gonna reach the people who aren't familiar with what’s in the report.

RUHLE: It was a woman who was at Justin Amash’s town hall who gets all of her news from conservative television and radio and she said, “I was under the impression the Mueller Report completely exonerated the President.”

ALI VELSHI: Because he said so.

RUHLE: Because he said so.

(...)

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