Some of CNN’s anchors have become known for their hostility towards President Trump – and those sentiments were also reflected in the network’s on-air graphics.
CNN presenter Brianna Keilar on Friday criticized the president’s repeated assertion that he is being tough on Russia, and her report was accompanied by a chyron at the bottom of the screen stating “Trump says he has been hard on Russia. No. “
“This is just not true,” Keilar said before citing 37 instances where the president has been “lenient” to Russia.
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The anchor listed several examples of Trump’s flattering rhetoric towards Russian President Vladimir Putin and his contempt for Russia’s campaign of interference in the 2016 election.
However, it was the on-air graphics that got the most attention.
Jeffrey McCall, professor at DePauw University and expert in journalistic ethics, accused CNN of devoting itself to its “predetermined narrative” that the president is a “Russian asset.”
“If this chyron had aired on one of the evening opinion broadcasts… and the evening CNN broadcasts are opinion broadcasts… I would have less concern about this obvious case of subjectivity,” McCall told Fox News. “But this graphic was released in the afternoon when CNN is supposed to do more objective journalism. The US-Russia relationship is of course complex, but CNN’s default coverage for media coverage of this relationship always starts with an anti-Trump angle and goes from there. ”
McCall added, “It sure thrills CNN’s many anti-Trump viewers, but it’s also a reason centrists and center-right people are questioning CNN’s credibility these days. ”
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William A. Jacobson, a Cornell Law School professor and media critic, told Fox News that CNN’s “absurd chyrons” are a symptom and symbol of the decline of the network, resulting in “horrific ratings.”
“At some point, CNN will understand that so many viewers are saying ‘no’ to CNN because of these theaters,” Jacobson said.
NewsBusters editor-in-chief Curtis Houck criticized CNN for releasing the graphic.
“He is not the chyron of a serious press organization. It’s a chyron that reads like it’s been written by a bitter, prepubescent Mean Girl, ”Houck tweeted.
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Fourth Watch media analyst Steve Krakauer, former CNN digital producer, has expressed disbelief at such a graphic being released on the network.
“It’s not real,” Krakauer responded to his former employer.
Hill media reporter Joe Concha wondered what CNN would look like once President Trump steps down, whether in 2021 or 2025.
“When Trump leaves the scene whenever possible, it will be interesting to see if CNN attempts to go back to being the serious news organization it was in the days of Bernard Shaw and Aaron Brown. And the chyron, from a political point of view, is very questionable and therefore an opinion, ”Concha wrote.
CNN did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
CNN’s graphics became somewhat notorious during the Trump era. In March 2019, the network aired a banner that read, “SOON: THE SENATE MUST EMBARREST TRUMP WITH AN ‘EMERGENCY’ VOTE.” ”
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In April, CNN was watched for several chyrons aired during the President’s Coronavirus Task Force briefing.
The graphics read: “Angry Trump turns briefing into propaganda session,” “Trump uses task force briefing to try to rewrite the history of coronavirus response,” “Trump is angry at reports he ignored viral warnings ”and“ Angry Trump uses video propaganda, produced by government employees at taxpayer expense. ”
Brian Flood of Fox News contributed to this report.