Nets, Cable Ignore Trump Signing Trade Deal With Japan, Helping Farmers

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At a White House signing on Monday, President Trump and representatives from Japan signed what the President called “the new U.S.-Japan trade agreement and the U.S.-Japan digital trade agreement.” The non-digital trade agreement included agriculture sales that would aid American farmers. After months of decrying how the President’s trade wars were harmful to farmers, the evening newscasts of ABC, CBS, and NBC completely ignored the signing.

While the networks were busy celebrating a reported second whistleblower with “first hand” information about Trump’s phone call with the president of Ukraine, PBS’s News Hour gave the signing a little bit of airtime.

And by “little bit,” it really was less than a minute. Fill-in anchor Amna Nawaz sprinted through the story giving it a mere two sentences in 11 seconds. “President Trump signed a limited trade deal with Japan today. It restores benefits that U.S. farmers lost when he withdrew from a broader agreement, negotiated by the Obama administration,” she reported in the news brief.

During the press conference at the White House, the President sold the deals in his classic style. “So, we're gathered here at the White House this afternoon to discuss a very strong and groundbreaking achievement for the United States and Japan,” Trump said. “They will create countless jobs, expand investment commerce, reduce our trade deficit very substantially, promote fairness and reciprocity, and unlock opportunities for growth.”

 

 

Trump added:

In the United States, these deals are a game-changer for our farmers and our ranchers. We love our farmers and we love our ranchers. We’ve been working very hard on this. Providing them with significantly enhanced access with a critical foreign market.

In a moment, I'll be honoring a lot of the folks in the room that are here with us from farm country, ranch country. And we're going to be witnessing a historic signing by Ambassador Robert Lighthizer, and Ambassador, from Japan, a long trip but he just got here, Sugiyama.

And it wasn’t just the broadcast networks who were ignoring the signing of the trade deal. A search of “Japan trade deal” on CNN.com didn’t return anything on the day’s signing. The top search result was a story titled, “Asian stocks slide as fears grow about trade and the global economy” from October 2. The third story was titled “Farmers find another reason to get frustrated with Trump.”

The same search term on MSNBC.com returned nothing on Monday’s signing as well. The most recent story was from September 23. There was also a story from The Maddow Blog from April 26 titled, “Trump’s TPP missteps serve as a backdrop for trade talks with Japan.”

With the signing happening at the top of the 4 o’clock hour, neither CNN’s or MSNBC’s shows in that timeslot (The Lead and Deadline: White House respectively) aired any of the event.

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

Fox News Channel’s Your World With Neil Cavuto
October 7, 2019
4:00:02 p.m. Eastern

(…)

PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP: In addition to what we're talking about today, they're building, Japan, many car plants in the United States which they weren't doing for a long time. They're building in Michigan, Ohio, lots of different states. And we just appreciate is very much. Been a tremendous investment.

But we’re here to talk a little bit about a different purchase and that's good as far as we're concerned and I want to thank you very much. Very much.

[Applause]

So, we're gathered here at the White House this afternoon to discuss a very strong and groundbreaking achievement for the United States and Japan. The signing of the new U.S.-Japan trade agreement and the U.S.-Japan digital trade agreement. Digital is becoming a very big factor in the world. These two deals are a tremendous victory for both our nations.

They will create countless jobs, expand investment commerce, reduce our trade deficit very substantially, promote fairness and reciprocity, and unlock opportunities for growth.

In the United States, these deals are a game-changer for our farmers and our ranchers. We love our farmers and we love our ranchers. We’ve been working very hard on this. Providing them with significantly enhanced access with a critical foreign market.

In a moment, I'll be honoring a lot of the folks in the room that are here with us from farm country, ranch country. And we're going to be witnessing a historic signing by Ambassador Robert Lighthizer, and Ambassador, from Japan, a long trip but he just got here, Sugiyama.

(…)

 

PBS’s News Hour
October 7, 2019
7:22:44 p.m. Eastern

AMNA NAWAZ: President Trump signed a limited trade deal with Japan today. It restores benefits that U.S. farmers lost when he withdrew from a broader agreement, negotiated by the Obama administration.

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