Rather on CNN: ‘Truth Is Closing In’ on Trump! Also, He Runs a CULT

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In a Sunday segment on so-called “Reliable Sources”, media janitor and host Brian Stelter proved how much of a clown show CNN was by trotting out disgraced journalist Dan Rather to talk about, of all things: why the “truth still matters.” At the same time, Stelter wanted Rather to talk about how the “truth is closing in” on President Trump, and how the President apparently runs a cult.

So let's talk more about the truth and why it matters and what's been happening in the impeachment inquiry coverage,” Stelter proclaimed as he introduced his panel of liberal journalists, which included the washed-up Rather, who he sucked up to: “And I’ve got to start with you Dan because you are our senior correspondent today. You’ve been watching history, along with the rest of us. Do you feel that anything changed after these first two days of televised hearings?”

Rather was adamant that “one thing has changed” during the Democratic-led impeachment hearings. “It's becoming increasingly apparent that truth is closing in. Truth does matter,” he said.

Someone should really tell Stelter that Rather was fired from CBS News because he rode a fake news story about President George W. Bush to the destruction of his career. But considering how often Stelter invites the serial liar on, it’s clear he’s trying to help rehabilitate Rather’s image. Rather still claims his lies about Bush were true.

“I think we've seen the last few days, as to say, truth has begun to close in. Facts are beginning to matter. The difference between facts and the truth, people under oath and the false narratives that have been put out in way of defense is beginning to tell,” Rather continued. The irony was lost on both of them.

 

 

Rather also took a shot at Fox News, claiming: “And there's been this feeling for a long time that well, the White House with this alternative narrative, a false narrative and with its allies in primetime on Fox was at least in a standoff with truth.”

After playing a clip of NBC’s Saturday Night Live mocking Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Stelter treated Rather’s unhinged rambling on Twitter with reverence:

Dan, you tweeted something that might be related to this. You said the other day, “I have covered many cults. Some end with a bang, others with a whimper, but they invariably end. The question is how much damage they leave in their wake.” Is Mitch McConnell part of the Trump cult?

That’s right, the guy who was opining about how “truth still matters” wanted his guest to talk about how the President runs a cult, of which there was no evidence.

Along with the ominous note that “cults generally don’t end well,” Rather agreed with his host’s notion about McConnell and claimed that all of Trump’s supporters were members of the cult and others knew it too:

And I’m not the only one making this observation that increasingly President Trump's support seems cultish. It's all about him it’s not about the policy, it’s not about the standards of politics. Ronald Reagan had a very solid following but he stood for something in terms of policy. Franklin Roosevelt, same way.

The segment was concluded with Rather suggesting he had his “doubts” that the impeachment hearings would break the cult’s hold.

Only “#FactsFirst” on CNN.

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

CNN’s Reliable Sources
November 17, 2019
11:02:27 a.m. Eastern

(…)

BRIAN STELTER: CNN’s Daniel Dale started making a list and came up with 45 ways that Trump has been dishonest about Ukraine and impeachment. 45 different way! That's remarkable. But watch out for the false equivalencies these not equally valid narratives that are out there. Yes, there are alternative universes of information. Yes, there are competing narratives but they're not equally true. Don't take it from me. Take it from that DOJ prosecutor, truth still matters.

So let's talk more about the truth and why it matters and what's been happening in the impeachment inquiry coverage. We have an incredible panel here in New York with me to talk about right-wing media's reaction and so much more. Nicole Hemmer, Dan Rather, Abigail Tracy all here with me.

And I’ve got to start with you Dan because you are our senior correspondent today. You’ve been watching history, along with the rest of us. Do you feel that anything changed after these first two days of televised hearings?

DAN RATHER: I think one thing has changed. It's becoming increasingly apparent that truth is closing in. Truth does matter. And there's been this feeling for a long time that well, the White House with this alternative narrative, a false narrative and with its allies in prime time on Fox was at least in a standoff with truth.

STELTER: Hmm.

RATHER: I think we've seen the last few days, as to say, truth has begun to close in. Facts are beginning to matter. The difference between facts and the truth, people under oath and the false narratives that have been put out in way of defense is beginning to tell.

Now, whether it's making a deep enough impression on public opinion to convince enough in the Republican Party in power to begin to say to themselves, “look, we have to fall in behind the truth.” I have some doubts, which is it say the Republican Party as a whole and in particular members of the Senate and the House and Republican Party are standing with the President. They are complicit in what he's doing. And as long as they are, then this false narrative, in which it's very easy to give false equivalence to the false narrative may yet reassert itself.

What I come back to for the first time I've had the feeling that truth is closing in. Facts are closing in. There's still a lot we don't know. I think in the succeeding, say, two to three weeks before Christmas, it's going to be decided whether there's a breakthrough with what we don't know that swings public opinion with enough pressure on enough Republicans to make this really interesting in the Senate. Or whether it's a done deal, the House passes impeachment, Mitch McConnell and company kills it in the Senate very quickly and we move on.

STELTER: Let’s see if can come back to McConnell because SNL had some jokes at his expense last night.

(…)

STELTER: Yeah, exactly. Look, the fate of the Trump presidency is in Mitch McConnell’s hands. We all know this is all going to end up in the Senate. Dan you tweeted something that might be related to this. You said the other day, “I have covered many cults. Some end with a bang, others with a whimper, but they invariably end. The question is how much damage they leave in their wake.” Is Mitch McConnell part of the Trump cult?

RATHER: Yes. I think the short answer is yes. And I’m not the only one making this observation that increasingly President Trump's support seems cultish. It's all about him it’s not about the policy, it’s not about the standards of politics. Ronald Reagan had a very solid following but he stood for something in terms of policy. Franklin Roosevelt, same way.

These cults—cults generally don’t end well. People will say it's too much to say it's a cult. But I don't think so because the further we go, it is always all about him.

STELTER: Hmm.

RATHER: It's not about a policy. And, by the way, on the issue at hand, the impeachment thing, this gets down to question of did he or did he not try to bribe a foreign government? Did he or did he not try to intimidate witnesses? When I say history is closing in on him and facts are closing in.

I think increasingly, people who pay attention, even people who really like him and people who perhaps are part of the cult, have to say, “Yeah, you know, it does look like he tried to bribe this foreign government, it does look like he's trying to intimidate witnesses.” Whether or not that's enough to have a real trial in the Senate or not, I have my doubts.

(…)

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