CNN's Stelter: Trump's Claim That Obama Is The Founder Of ISIS “Is A Coded Message Suggesting The President Of The United States Is A Traitor” 

From the August 11 edition of CNN's New Day:

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CHRIS CUOMO (CO-HOST):  There is perception out there that we favor the Democrats. When Hillary Clinton was getting ready to run and Trump was getting ready to run, I said on the show, “man, we're doing Clinton's work for her, boy. The media is begging her to run, so she better do it already.” People said, “oh you see, you're giving her a pass.” No, I was saying the media wanted her in the race because it would be a better race to cover. We did the same thing with Trump, but people's tendencies are, “you're bunch of lefties, and that means you are not going to do to Trump what  -- you won't do to Clinton what you're doing to Trump.” Do you think that's true?

JIM RUTENBERG: Well, first of all, that perception exists, and in many cases it exists for good reasons over the course of history in recent decades. That said, it can't be reason to not do your job when you're covering trump, to worry about the perception. We're not in PR, we're in journalism. We have to scrutinize Hillary just as hard as we can. 

CUOMO: Do you think we do? Do you think that the media has been equally tough on each? 

RUTENBERG: I think equally tough, yes. Does Trump throw up more things that need be scrutinized, especially as a brand new want to be public figure, yes. That's the difference. 

BRIANNA KEILAR (CO-HOST): Does it give her an advantage in some ways? I'll tell you, as someone who has covered her now for over two years, going into that you just know when you're covering Hillary Clinton, that there is going to be a lot of scrutiny. But it seems like, you know, in the end, time is finite, resources are finite. If a lot of fact checking is going on with Donald Trump, does it in some ways help her?

BRIAN STELTER: I think the email coverage this week is showing that Clinton is being vigorously covered and fact checked. But Trump is different. Donald Trump says Barack Obama is the founder of ISIS. On one level, that's a reference to foreign policy decisions by the Obama administration. On another level, that is a coded message suggesting the president of the United States is a traitor. That's what that is. It is a coded message. When we repeat that message and then we come on the air and fact check it, some people just take away the idea that it is true. They just hear it, and believe it. In fact, it reinforces people's beliefs in some cases. That's a problem for the media that I don't have the answer to. Even if we talked for an hour, I don't know what we do in those scenarios. What we're doing right now isn't working. 


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