Carl Bernstein on CNN: Cable Media Have Been “Positively Awful” In Covering The “Real Biography” Of Trump

Bernstein: Media Has Allowed Trump “To Play Us” Into Covering All Of “His Outrageous Statements” And Giving “Equal Time” To His Surrogates As We Give To Clinton's Surrogates, But We Don't “Look At His Whole Business Record.”

From the September 18 edition of CNN's Reliable Sources:

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BRIAN STELTER (HOST): Let's talk about the last seven days of Hillary Clinton's campaign. She had her near collapse this time last Sunday. Off the campaign trail for several days. Now back on the campaign trail. Has she, you think, fully recovered in a political and media sense from what happened last weekend?

CARL BERNSTEIN: I don't know the answer to that question because there is a much larger question about the overall coverage of this campaign by the electronic media, by cable and network news. We've been terrific at interpretation at giving equal time to debate panels. But we've been positively awful in terms of reporting in a coherent way the biggest story of this campaign, the real existing life and record of Donald Trump. The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal have done fabulous reporting on this. And we give snippets of it. We need to be doing an hour, two hours a night of real biography, running it over and over of what Trump's life and record have been about because they're at absolute odds with the mythical and lying story that he has told us. He's a con man. It's been established. And also he has presided over a cover up of his own life. And we have allowed it in cable news and network news particularly. 

STELTER: Well, here we are talking about it, I think some people have talked about it. But I have to push back a little bit. I see and hear comments like yours online every day and yet you could say it's all coming from liberals who don't want to see Trump elected. Isn't there a visceral hatred of Trump among a lot of journalists and isn't that seeping through in the TV coverage, and in the print coverage as well? 

BERNSTEIN: I think what's seeping through, and I wouldn't call it hatred, I think that there is realization and it's not just liberals, I think it's conservatives, too, there is realization that trump is a con man. And that that is a big part of the story. Look, we have reported and nobody has been tougher on Hillary Clinton especially on the server question than I, I've said it's indefensible what she did with it, and we have reported on her whole life. She has been around for 25, 30 years in public on the public stage. And we know her every position and record and her life. Trump is different. He's a new kid on the block in terms of being in a presidential campaign. We need to do what the Washington Post and The New York Times and the other print press or old fashioned media has done, which is to report the real existing record repeatedly. That is the story here. And that's where the Clinton campaign has a really good beef against the media. We haven't -- it's not equal. It's disequal that we have allowed Donald Trump to play us like this and we focus on his outrageous statements which we do every day and we give equal time to those on his side and Hillary's side debating these crazy statements and positions that he changes every day. And we analyze that, but do we go back and look at his whole business record? No. We don't. How about a real investigative biography on MSNBC, on CNN that runs every night about Donald Trump and about Hillary Clinton, about their two lives? Put them side by side and run it every night until the debates.


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