The vicious anti-Trump echo chamber that is CNN sprang into action after a series of tweets from President Donald Trump denouncing the living conditions in the congressional district represented by Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD).
Seizing on the tweets to push the prerequisite claim that the president is racist, on-air talent at the network even summoned tears over Trump using the term “infested” to describe a rodent problem constituent’s have complained about.
But leave it to CNN chief media correspondent Brian Stelter to further a narrative that essentially runs cover for Cummings by detracting from the negative attention being drawn to his district.
Trump’s tweets came after a “Fox & Friends” segment that featured Kimberly Klacik, a black Republican strategist who was in Cumming’s district, calling attention to the poor living conditions in West Baltimore.
With the president’s tweets repeating information from this segment, Stelter hit the rival network for informing Trump.
The logic implied? Fox News didn’t focus on the nicer areas in Cummings district.
“There are factual inaccuracies with these tweets, and then there are the moral and ethical problems. But this did clearly come from a Fox News segment earlier today,” Stelter said.
“An hour after there was a Fox News segment on their pro-Trump talk show talking about the conditions in West Baltimore, which is a poverty-stricken neighborhood with … really troubling conditions,” he continued, “The segment really focused only on that part of Cummings’ district and showed pictures from that area. And it’s very clear the president saw that segment and tweeted as a direct result.”
Instead of focusing on the appalling conditions highlighted, the CNN correspondent looked to factual inaccuracies, and brought race into play to make it more about moral and ethical issues — continuing the claim that Trump is using racist code words.
“So there were factual mistakes to the president’s attack,” he said, “And then there are the moral issues, the ethical issues, when he tries to target an African-American congressman, and describe the man’s district as crime-infested. The word ‘infested’ of course has deeply disturbing connotations in history.”
Never mind that Klacik is a black Republican strategist calling out the conditions in Cummings’ district, and that the constituents she speaks to in her videos are also black.
But nothing can stand in the way of the “Trump is a racist” narrative, especially not facts.
“So there are issues here I think on multiple levels factually, morally, and it’s more of the same from the president,” Stelter added in his segment. “He hears things on Fox, he reacts with racially — with racist tweets, and, you know, it’s unfortunately more of the same.”
Following a familiar script, after deeming the term “infested” racially oriented code, CNN anchor Fredricka Whitfield stated that this is a pattern from Trump, whether or not he “may be inspired by, you know, programming on another network.”
Stelter responded by pointing out how uninformed and prejudiced Trump’s supporters are.
“I think it’s because a lot of people that they read his tweets, some of his greatest fans, don’t have the full context,” he said. “They see what he posts, they take it as gospel, they move on his day in some cases his words back up existing prejudices. If you only know Baltimore from the riots in 2016 — which were partly in Cummings’ neighborhood — if you only know Baltimore from that then you might have a very warped view of what the city of Baltimore actually is.”
He then set his sights on the network CNN cannot begin to compete with. Stelter implied that Fox News is intentionally steering the president in a negative manner.
“But the president only hearing these snapshots on Fox News that are really designed to make him angry and resentful,” he said.
Stelter pushed his attack on Fox News on social media, as well.
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) July 27, 2019
In the wake of Trump’s tweets, leftists like Stelter have sufficiently shifted focus away from Cummings’ struggling district and placed it directly on Trump.
No mention of the severe poverty there or that “Baltimore had the worst homicide rate among the nation’s 50 largest cities last year and the second-highest violent crime rate overall,” as the Baltimore Sun reported in 2018.
As for the context Stelter speaks of, CNN also brushed over Cummings being called out for his hypocrisy over the southern border and grandstanding about conditions there while many of his own constituents deal with far worse situations right in his back yard.
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