It’s not often that CNN media reporter Brian Stelter is honest about his blatant biases when it comes to politics, just take his assertions about the President’s mental fitness and his denials of making such connections. But during an appearance on the Monday edition of HLN’s S.E. Cupp Unfiltered, the Reliable Sources host appeared to let it slip that he let radical anti-gun activist David Hogg get away with making false claims about the guns and the NRA during a February 25 interview on his show.
Stelter’s admission came after host S.E. Cupp questioned him about the wisdom of the media’s obsession with elevating only the kids pushing gun control. “Brian, we as a business have been giving these kids a lot of coverage. All the networks have in some way or another,” she explained, noting boringness of nuanced policy. “But the policies is the tough part. Do you think in showing these kids so often, as often as we all do, we're doing actually them a disservice because the policy is actually what's going to change this?”
And with no sort of trickery from Cupp, Stelter just blurted out that he let the gun control advocate get away with lying to CNN’s viewers. “A disservice is a strong word, but when I was interviewing David Hogg only ten days after the massacre, there were a few times I wanted to jump in and say let's correct that fact,” he said.
Cupp immediately wanted to know if Stelter ever corrected the record. According to Stelter, he let most of the lies stand as truth and just tried to make excuses. “And at one of the times I did and other times I did not. There's always that balance, how many times you’re going to interrupt,” he argued. A blatant double standard that would not fly if Hogg was from the right or someone on Fox News.
The only time Stelter could recall correcting the raging anti-gunner was when he claimed NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch was the CEO of the organization. The instance was such low hanging fruit, he was really just picking it up off the ground under the tree. Interesting side note: That interview was conducted with Hogg sitting next to disgraced CBS anchor Dan Rather, and he gave the young activist-reporter career advice.
Stelter then tried to defend Hogg’s misinformation by speaking positively for his passion for the issue, but in the process spewed his own lies about gun violence. “I think we have to recognize where David Hogg and Emma Gonzalez are coming from. There has been an increase in the lethality of mass shootings in recent years in this country. The so-called top ten list of horrors is very, very ugly and very recent,” he asserted. “I do think they are trying to raise awareness of that.”
But CNN’s own reporting proves that to be false.
According to his network’s own “fast facts” updated on February 19 from its original 2013 publication, three of the top ten deadliest mass shooting in US history occurred pre-Bill Clinton era. And the numbers of people killed in those tragic events were greater than the Parkland shooting.
It’s unclear what about S.E. Cupp Unfiltered throws Stelter off of his game when it comes to hiding his liberal bias, but he has a habit of letting his facade fall away.
During a February 23 appearance, Stelter appeared to openly endorse and defend journalists becoming gun control advocates because all they wanted was to save lives. During Monday’s episode, he even got combative with Cupp because he felt she was discrediting the nationwide gun control rallies by noting they garnered the support of celebrities. “I think that was a cheap shot to say it was about celebrities,” he declared.
CNN and Stelter put a lot of stock into their so-called “#FactsFirst” campaign but when push comes to shove with their side, they’re more than happy to just let the lies slide on by.
Transcript below, click expand to read:
S.E. Cupp Unfiltered
March 26, 2018
5:18:08 PM Eastern
S.E. CUPP: Brian, we as a business have been giving these kids a lot of coverage. All the networks have in some way or another. And as I was mentioning in the last segment with Connie Mack, gun policy is boring, right, so it doesn't get a lot of TV coverage. It shouldn't, it is boring, I understand that. But the policies is the tough part. Do you think in showing these kids so often, as often as we all do, we're doing actually them a disservice because the policy is actually what's going to change this? The passion, I fear, will just sound like noise after a while and people will tune it out.
BRIAN STELTER: A disservice is a strong word, but when I was interviewing David Hogg only ten days after the massacre, there were a few times I wanted to jump in and say let's correct that fact.
CUPP: That's so interesting, let me stop you. Did you?
STELTER: And at one of the times I did and other times I did not. There's always that balance, how many times you’re going to interrupt.
CUPP: Yes, it’s a very tricky thing because this is a victim on one hand who is entitled to his own emotional response. But at the same time as news people, when we hear something demonstrably untrue, you want to go in and say that's not right.
STELTER: When he called Dana Loesch the NRA CEO, I interrupted and corrected that but there are other times when-- I think, all of us can agree, any of these students, any of these parents, we want everybody to be as well informed as we can about contours of this debate. I think we have to recognize where David Hogg and Emma Gonzalez are coming from. There has been an increase in the lethality of mass shootings in recent years in this country. The so-called top ten list of horrors is very, very ugly and very recent.
So, I can see where these students are coming from, saying this is getting worse. It's not just that there are 90 something people that day a die from guns, mostly from suicides. It’s that the mass shootings are getting worse. I do think they are trying to raise awareness of that.
I just want to say one other thing. The marches was so far beyond the students at this point. Here in New York, across the country, Emma Gonzalez, David Hogg, they're going to continue to get attention. It wasn't just about celebrities. I think that was a cheap shot to say it was about celebrities. The people out there in New York were not out there to see celebrities.
CUPP: No, my point is it’s not just the students, it was celebrities and it was politicians—
STELTER: But who cares about the celebrities? The people weren't there for the celebrities. They're there because they're scared, they’re freaked out, and they’re pissed off.
CUPP: But I’m saying celebrities were also pissed off and emotional and passionate.
STELTER: Sure. I mean, I don’t think that was why people were on the streets. I don't think that's why people were on the streets from Spokane to Springfield and Walla Walla to Wilmington. People were coming out across the country because the intensity gap has closed. It's not just gun rights proponents that are intense about this now, it is gun control activists and that's going to be a challenge in November.
CUPP: Okay. I mean this is rarely –
STELTER: You don't think the intensity gap has closed and we saw that over the weekend?
CUPP: In terms of passion?
STELTER: That’s what I mean about passion.
CUPP: No, the politics. People who are for the Second Amendment are single issue voters. They will turn out for this. The people who are not, this is not a big driver, especially in a midterm. I just don't know that you're going to see it.