In just three nights of coverage, ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts spent more than 11 minutes talking about the threat of recession and economic worries mostly tied to one economic signal. The main reason for concern was that the yield on a particular short-term versus long-term Treasury bond inverted (generally long-term bonds have higher yields) and spooked investors on Aug. 14. This sent the Dow down by more than 800 points.
CNN host Don Lemon joined his liberal panelists in ganging up on his one conservative guest on Monday night’s CNN Tonight over the idea that the economy was doing well. Rob Astorino of President Trump’s re-election campaign argued that the media was pushing a false narrative put out by Democrats that a recession was near, but the economy was actually stable. But the liberals at CNN insisted he was wrong, with one analyst even calling that idea a conservative “conspiracy.”
On Fox and Friends Monday, the hosts brought on Fox Business host Charles Payne to comment on how the media is now openly hoping for an economic recession under President Trump. Payne called the media’s newest obsession a “deliberate” attempt to derail the good economy under Trump, and argued there was “no economic data” to suggest a recession was near.
On Monday, all three network morning shows kept rooting for recession as a way to harm President Trump’s 2020 reelection chances. Hosts and correspondents dismissed the White House “attempting to downplay growing concerns that the U.S. economy could be headed for a recession” while touting Democrats “seizing the moment.”
Real Time host Bill Maher doubled down on his desire for a recession Friday night. Maher has expressed his wish for a recession multiple times; hoping that an economic downturn would lead to President Trump losing his bid for a second term in the White House.
During Thursday’s The Story, FNC host Martha MacCallum reported that “fears of a recession seem to be running high and some in the media seem almost giddy that an economic downturn would hinder President Trump’s chances in 2020.” After playing a “sampling” of media figures weighing in on the effect of a recession on President Trump’s re-election bid, MacCallum slammed the “unpatriotic” and “inhumane” media for rooting for a recession in the hopes that an economic downturn will cause him to lose re-election.
Now that Mueller and the dossier are ancient (buried) news, the liberal Spanish-speaking media will jump at any chance (asides from its non-stop illegal immigration litany) to declare doomsday for President Trump and his Administration. Case in point: the possibility, according to Univision, CNN en Español and Estrella TV, of an economic recession that could put an end to Trump’s claim to credit for the current economic boom.
As #TrumpRecession trends on Twitter and the liberal media panic over a “coming economic meltdown,” economist Art Laffer took a different view. The former economic adviser to President Ronald Reagan told Fox News that he wasn’t currently worried. “I’m not at, right now, concerned about a recession,” Laffer told America’s Newsroom. “We have great policies in. This administration has done a great job on taxes, on monetary policy, on regulatory policy.”
Appearing on NBC’s Today show Thursday morning, CNBC Mad Money host Jim Cramer was the voice of calm, telling his colleagues to “dial back the hysteria” over the economy and reassuring viewers that “the markets are up huge.” He called out those in the press, including NBC, that were “sowing panic” about the possibility of a future recession.
Look at the bright side! Sure, a recession could throw millions of Americans out of work, and shrink retirement portfolios. But an economic downturn would also hurt President Trump in 2020! That was CNN's theme this morning. The 6 am New Day hour led with co-host John Berman trumpeting yesterday's stock market drop. CNN economic analyst Rana Foroohar then said of a recession: "it's here."John Avlon weighed in to crow: "if the economy goes south, [Trump] is in a world of hurt."
With the so-called “inverted yield curve” for bonds creeping up on Wednesday, ABC and NBC sprinted to stoke fears that “a recession could be on the horizon”, as NBC White House correspondent Kristen Welker declared. But over on CBS Evening News, chief financial analyst Jill Schlesinger was telling viewers to “run your life as if this were just any old day.”
Listen to the two-beat sound at the very end of the clip. Reminiscent of the famous "doink-doink" from NBC's" Law & Order," no? Viewers would be forgiven for thinking that the clip [which aired on CNN this morning] was indeed a promo for a TV crime show. Or might it have been an anti-Trump attack ad from the DNC? It's not until the New York Times logo appears at the very end that it's seen to be a commercial for the newspaper, making the explicit commercial pitch ["the truth is worth it"] for an investigative attack on President Trump's finances.