In the Republican half of America, CNN has been viewed as a relentless source of negative coverage of President Trump. But liberal journalists get upset when CNN somehow breaks from its usual stance and says something nice….even after a horrific mass shooting.
CNN anchor John King called Trump’s speech to the nation on Monday morning to be “pitch perfect” for the situation. Washington Post media blogger Erik Wemple angrily denounced this phrasing in a post headlined “’Pitch perfect’: CNN scrambles to glorify Trump’s Las Vegas speech.”
Wemple used terms like “glorify” to describe fairly qualified praise, and oddly claimed CNN presented it as “a marvel of possibly historic proportions.”
On CNN, though, it was a marvel of possibly historic proportions. “Look, pitch perfect from the president right there,” said John King, anchor and chief national correspondent for CNN. “I’m sure already there are some people out there because of the polarized environment we live in who won’t like something they heard or won’t trust something they heard or won’t find truthfulness or credibility in something their president just said. I would hope that they would take a breath and let the president have his piece here, in the sense that he came out, he said he wanted to unify the country.”
There was no asterisk on King’s words to indicate that he was grading on the curve. Nor does the “polarized environment” bear the blame for the president’s lack of credibility. His lies and untruths do.
In other words, Wemple's instruction to CNN is: Never let Trump unify the country for five minutes after a mass shooting. King said "take a breath." Wemple says "never let up."
Take a look at Trump's remarks. They read as a very heartfelt appeal to unity after a terrible mass shooting. Wemple admits Trump didn't fail with this speech. It was..."fine." Trump-hating journalists assume everything Trump reads off a Tele-Prompter is insincere, and will be ruined later on Twitter. That could happen, but that doesn't mean it's some sort of crime against journalism to say in effect "he said a nice thing to the country there for a moment."
Wemple continued his lecture of John King and the alleged Trump boosters on CNN: "Speeches provide journalists from mainstream organizations a remarkable opportunity to render a positive judgment on a man who is patently unfit to discharge the duties of his office." CNN suffered from the "cable-news malady" that "nothing seems as important" as what's presently being displayed on screen.
But it's Wemple that's overplaying this speech as "historic" and objecting to King's moment of praise as anything but a fleeting moment.