NBC Touts Mexico Scolding Trump For Comment Media Misled Public About

The liberal media made fools out of themselves Wednesday as nearly every major news outlet rushed to breathlessly report that President Trump had called all illegal immigrants to the United States “animals.” Of course, the glaring problem with their claims was that they were totally false. And despite the fact the media had to issue reams of retractions and corrections, NBC Nightly News and Spanish-language networks Univision and Telemundo kept up the charade Thursday evening.

Here is Trump’s comment, complete with the full context:

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: There could be an MS-13 gang member I know about, if they don't reach a certain threshold, I cannot tell ICE about them.

TRUMP: We have people trying to come into the country, trying to come in we're stopping a lot of them, but we're taking people out of the country, you wouldn't believe how bad these people are. These aren't people, these are animals.

In defiance of the facts, NBC White House correspondent Peter Alexander wrapped up his report about the North Korea summit by touting Mexico rebuking the President. “Also tonight, the Mexican government is calling out President Trump for describing some undocumented immigrants as animals Wednesday. Mexico telling the State Department that is unacceptable,” he hyped.

Alexander appeared skeptical of Trump’s explanation saying, “The President insists today that he was talking about MS-13 gang members and says he would call them animals again.” In this case, NBC didn’t even play a clip of what they claim the President said and just wanted viewers to trust their take on it. And as proof of how far off-base NBC was in continuing to put the debunked narrative, neither ABC nor CBS (their network news competitors) mentioned it Thursday evening. 

 

 

As would be expected, Univision’s Jorge Ramos spouted off and discounted the President’s defense. “Animals, that's the word, animals some undocumented immigrants to the United States deports,” he fumed. And on Telemundo, Jose Diaz-Balart also highlighted Mexico’s rebuttal, saying: “Mexico said that it is unacceptable that President Trump referred to some immigrants as animals.

Meanwhile, roughly two hours prior to NBC Nightly News, the HLN’s S.E. Cupp Unfiltered was taking the media to task for their misleading reports on the President’s comments.

Unsurprisingly the President made headlines for those comments which came during an immigration roundtable. Unfortunately, they were the wrong headlines,” host S.E. Cupp scorned the media as she displayed some of their tweets declaring the falsehood and played the full clip. After recalling the media’ backpedaling, Cupp lamented the state of the media: “But the damage was already done. And to be clear the damage was not to the President, it was to the media.

For the panel discussion, Cupp first turned to producer Andy Levy who had the diagnosis for the liberal media’s truth problem. “And I think that's the sort of the ‘get it first, don't get it right’ mentality that you see a lot on social media, and that a lot of news organizations and journalists, in general, are guilty of particularly on social media,” he suggested.

Levy also argued that the reason the media rushed to claim Trump called all immigrants “animals” was because it fit squarely into their anti-Trump narrative. “But the bigger problem here, far beyond any of that, is failing to check things that fit your narrative. If your narrative is Trump hates immigrants and you have a clip he appears to call all immigrants animals, you have to double check.

I've seen a lot of people saying, ‘Oh well, it sounded like Trump’ or ‘Trump has said stuff like that before.’ That is no excuse,” he added.

Cupp made a great point by noting that what the media did was, in fact, fake news: “We’ve talked before about the problem with fake news and part of the problem is we have to get better at our job. Stuff like this gives Trump a very easy win when he talks about fake news.

The transcripts are below, click "expand" to read: 

(H/T to MRC Latino's Kathleen Krumhansl for providing the translated Univision and Telemundo quotes)

 

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NBC Nightly News
May 17, 2018
7:07:42 PM Eastern [16 seconds]

(…)

PETER ALEXANDER: Also tonight, the Mexican government is calling out President Trump for describing some undocumented immigrants as animals Wednesday. Mexico telling the State Department that is unacceptable. The President insists today that he was talking about MS-13 gang members and says he would call them animals again.

(…)

 

HLN
S.E. Cupp Unfiltered
May 17, 2018
5:17:14 PM Eastern [3 minutes 18 seconds]

(…)

S.E. CUPP: Then we had this video.

DONALD TRUMP: You wouldn't believe how bad these people are. These aren't people. These are animals.

CUPP: Astounding. Unsurprisingly the President made headlines for those comments which came during an immigration roundtable. Unfortunately, they were the wrong headlines. If you read any of these tweets from nearly every major news outlet in the wake of the President’s meeting, you would have surely thought he was calling all immigrants animals. Well, it sounds like him. But that was only part of it, here's the longer version which puts the whole thing in context.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: There could be an MS-13 gang member I know about, if they don't reach a certain threshold, I cannot tell ICE about them.

TRUMP: We have people trying to come into the country, trying to come in we're stopping a lot of them, but we're taking people out of the country, you wouldn't believe how bad these people are. These aren't people, these are animals.

CUPP: To be clear, MS-13 is a gruesome and violent gang that has ravaged a number of small towns across the country. CNN issued guidance to its newsroom last night that included the full context and the Associated Press removed and corrected an earlier tweet that omitted the MS-13 reference. But the damage was already done.

And to be clear the damage was not to the President, it was to the media.

(…)

Andy, let's take the second video. This is bad. It's not that one outlet got it wrong, it’s that they all got it wrong almost simultaneously. Like, you could almost see the domino effect. What do you think explains what happens yesterday?

ANDY LEVY: Well, there is a whole bunch of things. And yeah, you absolutely can't do this. It started primarily on social media with the Twitter accounts from news organizations sending out the clip that didn't have the context. And I think that's the sort of the “get it first, don't get it right” mentality that you see a lot on social media, and that a lot of news organizations and journalists, in general, are guilty of particularly on social media.

(…)

But the bigger problem here, far beyond any of that, is failing to check things that fit your narrative. If your narrative is Trump hates immigrants and you have a clip he appears to call all immigrants animals, you have to double check-- it's even more important that you check it when it fits what you think is going on. You need to double, triple, quadruple check it. You need to ask questions about context because it's almost like -- I don't want to say it's too good to be true, because the quote is not good, but it's that same thing. I've seen a lot of people saying, “Oh well, it sounded like Trump” or “Trump has said stuff like that before.” That is no excuse, journalists need to be factivists, for a lack of a better word. You can't report something because it seems like something Trump would say.

CUPP: We’ve talked before about the problem with fake news and part of the problem is we have to get better at our job. Stuff like this gives Trump a very easy win when he talks about fake news.

(…)


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CyberAlerts Foreign Policy Mexico Immigration Bias by Omission Conspiracy Theories Broadcast Television NBC NBC Nightly News Cable Television HLN (formerly CNN Headline News) S.E. Cupp Unfiltered Fake News Video Andy Levy Peter Alexander S.E. Cupp Donald Trump