CNN Called Out for Presenting Pro-Trump Activists as Regular Voters. This Isn’t Even the First Time.
Would your average cable news viewer be surprised to learn that Republican activists still support Donald Trump even after his latest racist tirade against four Democratic congresswomen? Of course not.
But if you are CNN and you simply label a panel of such activists as plain old Republican voters, perhaps you think it is a much more interesting story.
So that is what the network did on Tuesday, asking a panel of eight Trump-supporting women if the newest blow-up had changed their minds about the president. What the network failed to mention is that this was anything but a random focus group. Most if not all of these women, in fact, are committed Republican activists, as multiple writers and journalists immediately noticed:
So that CNN “panel” of “Republican women” who were fine with Trump’s tweets was a group of women who are members of a group called the “Trumpettes of America”. https://t.co/PF2mOb8aZY
— Jane Coaston (@cjane87) July 17, 2019
These GOP women aren’t random; they’re party activists.
Gina O’Briant campaigned as “Women for Trump” in TX in 2017. https://t.co/HL4ip68SXd
— Jennifer Bendery (@jbendery) July 17, 2019
For the umpteenth time, CNN presents a group of picked GOP activists like they’re a focus group. It’s of a piece with giving Richard Spencer an in-studio hit and maintaining a roster of contributors who are bound by contract not to disparage Trump. https://t.co/MH8IFW6Thp
— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) July 17, 2019
Two of these Republican women are members of the Texas Women for Trump Coalition, another is the national director of Trumpettes for America. https://t.co/HaCiuF1O7a
— Steve Garfield (@stevegarfield) July 17, 2019
But CNN’s Anderson Cooper described them as simply part of Trump’s base. Reporter Randi Kaye described them as “eight Republican women from Dallas.” The overall effect was to diminish the fact that these are hardcore Republican activists who are unlikely to abandon this president under any circumestances.
As documented by Parker Molloy of Media Matters, this is not the first time CNN has presented a panel of Trump voters without mentioning that they are hardcore Republican activists. In fact, it’s not even the first time they have used some of the same women for a panel. Kaye interviewed at least two of the same women in January of 2018, a year after Trump’s inauguration, about the exact same subject:
Also, this is the same group of women CNN interviewed before so it could run a “GOP women support Trump despite Stormy Daniels payoff” story https://t.co/xQpF8BlOz3
— Parker Molloy (@ParkerMolloy) July 17, 2019
After the panel segment, Anderson Cooper spoke with Maggie Haberman of The New York Times and CNN political director David Chalian about how “depressing” he finds the current state of politics, where even such blatant racism as Trump demonstrated this week could not diminish his support from Republican women. Perhaps Cooper should try asking some who were not party activists, because that could make a difference.
Watch the clip above, via CNN.