CNN Media Panel Fears Fox News Is Controlling the Government

Deep in the bowels of the internet, you’ll find conspiracy theorists who believe lizards are in control of the government, but on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” you’ll find people who believe the government is run by a Fox. Fox News that is. It has been a growing concern among left-wing media hacks that, since President Trump took office, conservative media now had the access and influence President Obama had gifted to them. And in recent weeks, CNN has been on a crusade of making it seem like it was abnormal.

As the Media Research Center previously reported, CNN ran a report cautioning their few viewers that the Trump administration was hiring friendly journalists in droves (but just a handful), while failing to mention that President Obama had hired as little as 30 friendly journalists (at least four from CNN) over his eight years in office.

But facts do not come first at CNN as Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter ran yet another segment decrying how Fox News opinion hosts had close and personal relationships with the President. “With high ratings comes huge headaches, that is really the deal with Sean Hannity and Fox News. Hannity’s relationship with President Trump is even tighter than we thought according to this new reporting from the Washington Post,” he announced to kick off the segment.

If what Stelter said was true, it might explain why CNN doesn’t have any headaches when it comes to how ridiculous their hosts and reporters conduct themselves.

Sarah Ellison, one of the writers of the Washington Post piece Stelter noted, was on the program and said she and her colleagues were surprised by the access Hannity had. She and Stelter quipped about Trump being one of Hannity’s producers:

 

 

I would say the funny thing about that relationship is that it does both ways. So, Donald Trump is actually helping produce what Sean Hannity -- and the message he’s delivering. The funny thing about it, though, is that Sean Hannity is also helping produce the President's message, which was one of the things my colleagues and I thought was the most, sort of, surprising about this story.

Apparently, none of them thought to mention how Obama would wine and dine with MSNBC hosts as they cooked up talking points and spin as well. Or his close personal friendship with CBS This Morning co-host Gayle King.

I think it comes to this question, John Avlon, state-run media or media-run state. MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace brought this up the other day, saying there's always talk about Fox being state-run TV but really is it Fox running the state,” Stelter asked to John Avlon of The Daily Beast.

Avlon acted like the Obama administration never happened as he righteously proclaimed that nothing like this has ever happened before. “Look, reality check: We’ve never had an administration as close to a partisan media outlet as this one. (…) We've never had media outlets staffing an administration to the extent -- literally to the extent Fox News and Breitbart have in this administration.

This must be one of those falsehoods Stelter had admitted letting slip by unopposed on his show because there was no corresponding “reality check” from the CNN host.

After playing a deceptively edited video making it seem as though President Trump got all of his thoughts from Fox News, “That is extraordinary! Because typically talking points in the past have gotten from politicians to partisan media,” Avlon declared.

Stelter then let the bitter Beast editor end the segment by smearing such Trump relationships by claiming they were “increase[ing] the tribalism on Twitter, the social media mobs, all the kinds of things that dumb down our debate and makes us meaner, dumber, and pettier as a country.

The relevant portions of the transcript are below, click "expand" to read: 

 

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CNN
Reliable Sources
April 22, 2018
11:39:52 AM Eastern

BRIAN STELTER: Welcome back to Reliable Sources. With high ratings comes huge headaches, that is really the deal with Sean Hannity and Fox News. Hannity’s relationship with President Trump is even tighter than we thought according to this new reporting from the Washington Post. Quoting here:

“Trump and Hannity usually speak several times a week. The two men review news stories and aspects Hannity’s show, and occasionally debate specifies about whatever the President is considering typing out on Twitter. The frequency of Hannity’s contact with Trump means that ‘he basically has a desk in the place,’ one presidential adviser said.”

The panel is back with me now. Sarah Ellison is one of the reporters who wrote that Washington Post story. So, Sarah, you're suggesting the President is also a producer of Hannity’s show?

SARAH ELLISON: Yes, I would say the funny thing about that relationship is that it does both ways. So, Donald Trump is actually helping produce what Sean Hannity -- and the message he’s delivering. The funny thing about it, though, is that Sean Hannity is also helping produce the President's message, which was one of the things my colleagues and I thought was the most, sort of, surprising about this story.

(…)

STELTER: I think it comes to this question, John Avlon, state-run media or media-run state. MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace brought this up the other day, saying there's always talk about Fox being state-run TV but really is it Fox running the state? What to you make of this suggestion?

  1. AVLON: Look, reality check: We’ve never had an administration as close to a partisan media outlet as this one. Think about the relationships between people in the past who have advised presidents.

(…)

AVLON: It was those relationships that lead a lot of principled conservatives to decry the closeness of that they called the MSM, and the Democratic Party and Democratic presidents. We've never had media outlets staffing an administration to the extent -- literally to the extent Fox News and Breitbart have in this administration.

And with Hannity this idea of him producing the presidency—and remember Trump-TV was plan-B for the president. This enormously dynamic relationship, of course it should be divulged, but there really is nothing quite like it in American history. And it ends up demeaning the independence of the good reporters at Fox, people like Bret Baier, Shep Smith, and other folks who are trying to play it straight and do it right. This is out—there is nothing we’ve seen in American history. There is no obvious parallel.

STELTER: Well, we’ve decided to look at some of what the President had to say at Mar-a-Lago this week, versus what was said on Fox beforehand. Let’s take a look at the combo here:

(…)

STELTER: Fox said it first, the President said it second, John, your reaction?

AVLON: That is extraordinary! Because typically talking points in the past have gotten from politicians to partisan media. This is a two-way street in something close to real time. It's self-reinforcing of the White House’s menace-- message, and then it increases the tribalism on Twitter, the social media mobs, all the kinds of things that dumb down our debate and makes us meaner, dumber, and pettier as a country. It’s an extraordinary two-way relationship we’ve never seen. And those conservatives how decried the too cozy relationship, [between] politicians and journalists in the past, they're either actively complicit in it or by their silence, the laziness of the anti-anti-Trump pose, they're complicit in it as well in a different way.

STELTER: To our panel, thank you.


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