CNN cut away from its live coverage of the White House coronavirus task force briefing Monday while President Donald Trump played a series of news clips defending his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
The White House video was aired in the middle of the daily media briefing and CNN’s Wolf Blitzer interrupted in the middle of it to analyze the video and Trump’s response to criticism of his administrations response to the pandemic.
First, Blitzer went to CNN “fact-checker” Daniel Dale, then to fellow CNN anchor John King.
When Trump started showing his own video of old clips (just like CNN, Fox, MSNBC do nightly), CNN actually cut away from the briefing to interject their own commentary and not show it. The other channels (Fox, MSNBC, CBS, ABC) all showed it. CNN confirmed the worst of the bunch. pic.twitter.com/akeSfpfETd
— Meltzer Said What? (@MeltzerSaidWhat) April 13, 2020
Dale defended statements made by former Vice President Joe Biden immediately after Trump announced the ban on travelers from China on Jan. 31, while King criticized the video Trump presented at Monday’s briefing.
“The president has every right to be proud of imposing the travel restrictions on China,” King told Blitzer.
“He was criticized by other people at the time, and it turns out every public health expert will now tell you that that helped.”
However, King said that the video was “propaganda” that was full of “cherry-picked” information.
“That was propaganda, that was not just a campaign video. That was propaganda aired at taxpayer expense in the White House briefing room,” King said. “And it was selective cherry-picking information.”
CNN’s John King calls Trump’s video that was just shown in the press briefing room, highlighting how the media downplayed the coronavirus and the steps he took early on in the pandemic, “propaganda”: “It was cherry-picked.” pic.twitter.com/vQG6bEjBFg
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) April 13, 2020
He added, “He has every right to defend himself, he has every right to push back and he has every right to challenge things that are factually not true. But to play a propaganda video at taxpayer expense in the White House briefing room is a new — you can insert your favorite word here — in this administration.”
MSNBC also cut away from the media briefing with host Ari Melber saying that it would not be airing any more of the briefing until “it returns to what it was supposed to be.”
“We are cutting into what was not a White House coronavirus task force briefing,” Melber said.
“We are going to avoid airing anymore of this White House briefing until it returns to what it was supposed to be — which was providing medical information.”
The MSNBC host said that the video suggests that the White House is spending “precious time” making videos to defend the president rather than providing the public with emergency medical information.
Trump aired the video and spent a large part of the media briefing defending his administration after an article published Saturday by The New York Times pointed to times it said the president “could have seen what was coming.”
“I just want to say, it’s very sad when people write false stories like, in that case I guess it was gotten mostly from The New York Times,” Trump said following the video.
“I would love to be able to say that we have a very honest press,” he added, about the 24:35 mark in the video above. “And I don’t mind being criticized, but not when they’re wrong, not when people have done a great job.”
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