Friday, November 25, 2016
The Donald chews out the media, how presidential of him
From The Donald's favorite media outlet
It had all the trappings of a high-level rapprochement: President-elect Donald J. Trump, now the nation’s press critic in chief, inviting the leading anchors and executives of television news to join him on Monday for a private meeting of minds.
On-air stars like Lester Holt, Charlie Rose, George Stephanopoulos and Wolf Blitzer headed to Trump Tower for the off-the-record gathering, typically the kind of event where journalists and politicians clear the air after a hard-fought campaign.
Instead, the president-elect delivered a defiant message: You got it all wrong.
Mr. Trump, whose antagonism toward the news media was unusual even for a modern presidential candidate, described the television networks as dishonest in their reporting and shortsighted in missing the signs of his upset victory. He criticized some in the room by name, including CNN’s president, Jeffrey A. Zucker, according to multiple people briefed on the meeting who were granted anonymity to describe confidential discussions.
It is not unusual for journalists to agree to off-the-record sessions with prominent politicians, including President Obama, as a way to gain insights and develop relationships.
But after details of Mr. Trump’s hectoring leaked on Monday in The New York Post, it seemed the meeting was being used as a political prop, especially after Trump-friendly news outlets trumpeted the session as a take-no-prisoners move by a brave president-elect.
“Trump Slams Media Elite, Face to Face,” blared the Drudge Report. “Trump Eats Press,” wrote Breitbart News.
Those curious to hear more of what the president-elect had to say at the closed-door session were out of luck: Although more than two dozen prominent journalists attended, many declined to comment because they had agreed to keep the proceedings off the record.
Kellyanne Conway, a top adviser to Mr. Trump, described the meeting in more tempered terms. “It was very cordial, very productive, very congenial,” Ms. Conway told reporters at Trump Tower. “It was also very candid and very honest.”
“From my own perspective,” she added, “it’s great to hit the reset button.”
Still, the encounter crystallized concerns that Mr. Trump, emboldened by his victory, may refuse to abide the traditional dynamic of a president and the journalists who cover him, a naturally adversarial relationship that is nevertheless based on some level of mutual trust.
Some media critics questioned why the television networks, which granted Mr. Trump hundreds of hours of free exposure during the campaign, would agree to Monday’s terms. “They learned *nothing* over past 18 months of covering Trump,” tweeted Erik Wemple of The Washington Post.
Television is of particular interest to Mr. Trump, who is a keen watcher of morning shows and this past weekend tweeted his displeasure at being mocked on an episode of “Saturday Night Live.”
Coverage of Mr. Trump increased ratings and revenue at news networks, even as some executives conceded that, early in the race, the president-elect was granted too much free exposure. By the end of the campaign, Mr. Trump seemed to turn on certain networks and television journalists, in particular CNN, prompting supporters to chant anti-media slogans.
Two people briefed on Monday’s meeting said that Mr. Trump seemed well versed in the networks’ ratings increase during the election and did not hesitate to bring the subject up.
Actually the media was very kind of him. If they had actually had some nads they would have called him out on his lies and Hillary would be the president elect.
Megyn Kelly was right, all the media did was feed him softball questions for the past year and a half.