ABC Downplays Launch of Trump’s Opioid Commission, But Praises Hillary

The United States took a step to fight the country’s opioid epidemic on Wednesday, as President Donald Trump launched a new commission to look into to problem. The commission will be headed up by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, but you wouldn’t know much about any of that if you were watching ABC’s World News Tonight. Instead of reporting that positive development for the country, the network had Correspondent Jon Karl praise failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton for making jokes during a speech in California.

“He [Donald Trump] wasn't the only one joking a little last night,” he hyped just before playing a clip of Clinton saying: “I am thrilled to be out of the woods and in the company of so many inspiring women. And there is no place I'd rather be than here with you, other than the White House.” He also touted that “After the laughs, Hillary Clinton unloaded on Republicans and their failed health care bill.”

Anchor David Muir barely touched on the creation of the commission, saying the Christie was joining Trump’s fight against opioid addiction. It was part of a lead-in to Linsey Davis’s report on the fate of some involved in the “Bridgegate” scandal. “As Chris Christie joined the President today at the White House to tackle the issue of drug addiction, back in New Jersey two of his former associates were sentenced to federal prison,” Davis said.

In contrast, on NBC Nightly News Anchor Lester Holt announced in a news brief that “Following up on a campaign promise, the President is launching a commission to be led by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie to address the crisis.” He also noted that “New Jersey is one of several states where overdoses have skyrocketed in recent years. Opioid addiction kills an estimated 78 people a day in this country according to the CDC.”

Not only did CBS run a news brief for Trump’s new commission, but they also ran an entire report on the effects addiction had on a town in Washington and what they were doing to fight it. “An American city is suing the maker of that drug [OxyContin],” Anchor Scot Pelley said, “Everett, Washington, claims that its heroin crisis is fueled by the aggressive distribution and abundant supply of pain pills.”

Pelley also touted the steps Christie had taken in New Jersey to fight opioid addiction. “Last month, Christie signed state legislation that requires insurance companies to cover substance abuse treatment, and it also puts a five-day limit on initial opioid prescriptions, including OxyContin,” he reported.

There are very few things that political partisans can agree on anymore, but the seriousness of the opioid epidemic is one of them. It’s a shame that ABC couldn’t find time to wedge in the launching of a commission designed to address the issue. Instead, they chose to highlight jokes by their failed candidate for president. 

Transcripts below: 

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ABC
World News Tonight
March 29, 2017
6:40:43 PM Eastern

JON KARL: He [Donald Trump] wasn't the only one joking a little last night.

HILLARY CLINTON: I am thrilled to be out of the woods [crowd laughs] and in the company of so many inspiring women. And there is no place I'd rather be than here with you, other than the White House.

KARL: After the laughs, Hillary Clinton unloaded on Republicans and their failed health care bill.

CLINTON: When this disastrous bill failed it was a victory for all Americans.

6:43:16 PM Eastern

LINSEY DAVIS: As Chris Christie joined the President today at the White House to tackle the issue of drug addiction, back in New Jersey two of his former associates were sentenced to federal prison.

...

NBC Nightly News
March 29, 2017
7:07:17 PM Eastern

LESTER HOLT: And one final note from the White House, where President Trump announced plans today to take on America's deadly opioid epidemic. Following up on a campaign promise, the President is launching a commission to be led by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie to address the crisis. New Jersey is one of several states where overdoses have skyrocketed in recent years. Opioid addiction kills an estimated 78 people a day in this country according to the CDC.

...

CBS Evening News
March 29, 2017
6:38:01 PM Eastern

SCOTT PELLEY: Today, President Trump launched a commission to fight opioid addiction. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will run it. Last month, Christie signed state legislation that requires insurance companies to cover substance abuse treatment, and it also puts a five-day limit on initial opioid prescriptions, including OxyContin. An American city is suing the maker of that drug. Everett, Washington, claims that its heroin crisis is fueled by the aggressive distribution and abundant supply of pain pills. …

NB Daily Crime Government Agencies Bias by Omission Political Scandals ABC World News Tonight CBS CBS Evening News NBC NBC Nightly News Video David Muir Linsey Davis Lester Holt Scott Pelley Donald Trump Hillary Clinton Chris Christie

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