Cupp, Stelter Bash Fox News as the ‘Roofie’ to the Collusion Conspiracy

CNN boss Jeff Zucker sent out his liberal media dung-shovelers over the weekend to try to clean up the mess they made by buying into the Trump-Russia collusion conspiracy theory. During Saturday’s Unfiltered, host S.E. Cupp and media correspondent Brian Stelter took to bashing Fox News for boasting about their proper neutral stance for the last two years. At one point, Cupp equated Fox News to a date rape drug and suggested they were knocking people out cover-up the story.

After describing President Trump’s latest criticisms of the fake news media as a “bloodlust”, Cupp seemed to admit, through quotes from other outlets, that the media was invested in an outcome from the Special Counsel investigation:

This from National Review's Rich Lowry, "Rachel Maddow did the left no favors with Trump coverage." From Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi, "WMD damaged the media's reputation, Russia gate may have destroyed it." From McKay Coppins in The Atlantic, "The resistance media weren't ready for this." From where you sit, any lessons that we should learn from this?

At the start of his comments, Stelter immediately leapt to create his own definition of “resistance media”. “Well, when we say resistance media, we mean liberal bloggers, commentators, hosts who - you're right, were rooting for an outcome who did want to find proof of an elaborate plot between Trump and Russia,” he claimed.

We got to differentiate between the reporters who were trying to get to the truth and the columnist and commentators who are rooting for an outcome,” Stelter continued. But on CNN there was no distinction. They told wild fairy tales that turned out to be fake news and had to be corrected, and reporters fired. Attack seemed to be their first priority, with truth coming further down the list.

From there, Cupp began to lash out at Fox News “personalities” for touting themselves as “the paragons of journalism” for not letting the conspiracy theory consume them. Disgustingly describing Fox News as a date rape drug, Cupp decried Fox’s skepticism of the accusations made against Trump with no evidence:

But my opinion Fox is not the antidote to this problem. It is the sedative. It is like the roofie of this problem. I mean Fox isn't suspicious at all if you can accuse some of being a little too suspicious Fox has suspended suspicion. And so I think Fox is trying to get away with whistling past a graveyard.

 

 

After calling Fox News hypocrites and seriously claiming “there's no such thing as media” (That’s right, the media correspondent claimed media didn’t exist), Stelter blamed to Trump for the media’s suspicion against him:

STELTER: I would back up and point out that there was a bipartisan consensus about the concern about Russia's attack against the United States. There was a lot of concern about Trump's lies and Trump world's misleading statements about that attack. There was a lot of reason here to be suspicious. And journalist's jobs are to ask those questions and be suspicious.

CUPP: You have to be suspicious, yes.

Speaking of hypocrisy, Cupp and Stelter breathlessly opined about how other stories were drowned out for the last two years (as if CNN didn’t control what they talked about). “This is a great moment to be reflective about the past two years, about how much focus was there on Trump-Russia versus some of the other policy decisions and issues that are in the news,” Stelter faux lamented.

“Right. I mean just as one example, I was digging around to sort of compare Trump's use of drone strikes in places like Yemen and Somalia and Pakistan versus Obama's,” Cupp added. Stelter agreed: “I would love more scrutiny.”

They concluded by claiming they hoped for adversarial relationships between the media and the 2020 Democratic field and future presidents. But we all know they’ve been praising most of those candidates. And if one of them was elected, they would be treated like the third coming of Jesus (the second coming being Obama).

The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:

CNN’s S.E. Cupp’s Unfiltered
March 31, 2019
6:18:07 p.m. Eastern

S.E. CUPP: The conclusion of the Mueller investigation has prompted some self- reflection within the media over whether we overhyped, over-reported, and were overly invested in a certain outcome of the report. President Trump made it clear what he thinks of the coverage last night tweeting, "So funny that The New York Times & The Washington Post got a Pulitzer Prize for their coverage, 100% negative and fake, of collusion with Russia. And there was no collusion. So, they were either duped or corrupt? In any event, their prizes should be taken away by the Committee.”

Trump's bloodlust aside I think it's important to do a self-audit and ask ourselves some tough questions. So here to do that with me as CNN's chief media correspondent and host of Reliable Sources, Brian Stelter. I don't think we should be afraid to have this conversation and I don't think it would be controversial to admit that some people in our business who purport to be journalists did what they're not supposed to do and rooted for an outcome.

This from National Review's Rich Lowry, "Rachel Maddow did the left no favors with Trump coverage." From Rolling Stone's Matt Taibbi, "WMD damaged the media's reputation, Russiagate may have destroyed it." From McKay Coppins in The Atlantic, "The resistance media weren't ready for this." From where you sit, any lessons that we should learn from this?

BRIAN STELTER: Well, when we say resistance media, we mean liberal bloggers, commentators, hosts who - you're right, were rooting for an outcome who did want to find proof of an elaborate plot between Trump and Russia.

CUPP: Conspiracy, yes.

STELTER: So far we do not have evidence of that and I do think when the final actual Mueller report comes out, people may feel underwhelmed once again, I think we've got to wait to see what's in the report but people may feel underwhelmed by that. We got to differentiate between the reporters who were trying to get to the truth and the columnist and commentators who are rooting for an outcome.

CUPP: Yes.

STELTER: Unfortunately, the line gets really blurry especially on cable news.

CUPP: It sure does.

STELTER: It gets very blurry and we'd all be better off if we made those distinctions more clear.

CUPP: I think that's smart, yes.

STELTER: We made those lines more clear.

CUPP: So Fox News personalities, it's not surprising, they are insisting that they are the paragons of journalism in that journalism virtue and that they didn't obsess over Mueller the way others did. But my opinion Fox is not the antidote to this problem. It is the sedative. It is like the roofie of this problem. I mean Fox isn't suspicious at all if you can accuse some of being a little too suspicious Fox has suspended suspicion. And so I think Fox is trying to get away with whistling past a graveyard.

STELTER: The H word comes to mind, hypocrisy. There's a lot of hypocrisy in the past week from folks who are saying the media should apologize to Trump. Well, first of all, there's no such thing as media, right?

CUPP: Right.

STELTER: Everybody has their own version of media. What I read on Facebook, what you read on Twitter, two different worlds, very different worlds, everybody has their own view of media these days. But Fox commentators are saying the mainstream media journalists and news outlets were too interested in this story.

I would back up and point out that there was a bipartisan consensus about the concern about Russia's attack against the United States. There was a lot of concern about Trump's lies and Trump world's misleading statements about that attack. There was a lot of reason here to be suspicious. And journalist's jobs are to ask those questions and be suspicious.

CUPP: You have to be suspicious, yes.

STELTER: Now, a lot of folks on Fox who were attacking mainstream media right now – “mainstream media” -- they are saying that this was a conspiracy theory. Well, some of those folks have also pushed their own conspiracy theories.

CUPP: Yes, plenty of them.

STELTER: So I think that's important context. But journalists should be reflective. This is a great moment to be reflective ...

CUPP: I agree, yes.

STELTER: ... about the past two years, about how much focus was there on Trump-Russia versus some of the other policy decisions and issues that are in the news.

CUPP: Right. I mean just as one example, I was digging around to sort of compare Trump's use of drone strikes in places like Yemen and Somalia and Pakistan versus Obama's.

STELTER: I would love more scrutiny.

CUPP: Definitely you can say things get underreported.

STELTER: Health care, being another example.

CUPP: Of course.

STELTER: The evening news this week, there's a lot more focus on Jussie Smollett on the nightly newscasts then on health care. And if you look at polls, Americans care a lot less about Trump-Russia or about that than about health care.

CUPP: Well, my problem isn't that we, as a body, have been too adversarial with this President. That's our job as you point out. My problem is that we're not always this adversarial with other administrations. I think from Obama to W, going all the way back to Jack Kennedy, think of how much we could have learned earlier about Vietnam, WMD, drone wars had we been a bit more adversarial.

STELTER: Right.

CUPP: And I'm concerned we're not going to be this adversarial going forward and a great place to start, Brian, would be with these Democratic contenders for 2020.

STELTER: For 2020 and the internet is, I think, changes this conversation versus 20 years ago. Nowadays, it's easier than ever for an insurgent news website, for a start-up, for an individual citizen to make an impact on the news agenda and to change the news cycle. Look, what's happening this weekend with a woman accusing Joe Biden of inappropriate behavior, that is an example of people being empowered by the ability to publish on the internet. I think that's partly happening.

The other element that's happening lately journalists are going to be more adversarial in the future because of what we've seen from the Trump administration. If we're not, that's a failure on our part, and the viewers at home need to hold us accountable.

CUPP: I'm glad you're optimistic.

STELTER: And thank for the web they can hold us accountable more than ever before.

CUPP: Yes, OK.

STELTER: People can reach out. They can be in touch. There's more of a two-way connection than ever before.

CUPP: Brian, always glad to have you on.

STELTER: Optimist, I can't help it.

CUPP: No, I like it. I think it's an important conversation. I'm glad you had it with me.

STELTER: Thanks.

CUPP: And make sure to catch Brian on Reliable Sources tomorrow at 11:00 Eastern for a more in-depth look at this very topic and so much more.

NB Daily Events Mueller Report Media Bias Debate Conspiracy Theories Double Standards Labeling Political Scandals Trump-Russia probe Cable Television CNN S.E. Cupp Unfiltered Video Brian Stelter S.E. Cupp Donald Trump

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