Fox News spins NBC report to blame Obama over Trump refusing to hold portrait ceremony for the former president

NBC News reported on Tuesday that there would likely be no official unveiling at the White House of former President Barack Obama’s portrait, as long as Donald Trump is still president.

The network’s reporting played a “both sides” narrative, even as it explained that Trump has accused Obama of “an unspecified crime.” (And not even mentioned: Trump built his political following by spreading the racist “birther” conspiracy theory that Obama was not legally eligible to be president in the first place.)

Trump is unconcerned about shunning yet another presidential custom, and he has attacked Obama to an extent no other president has done to a predecessor. Most recently he's made unfounded accusations that Obama committed an unspecified crime.

Obama, for his part, has no interest in participating in the post-presidency rite of passage so long as Trump is in office, the people familiar with the matter said.

CNN reported that “an administration official said there have been some discussions between the White House and Obama's team to hang the portrait but no date was ever officially scheduled.”

While delivering news headlines Wednesday morning, Fox News twisted NBC's reporting to place the blame squarely on Obama:

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Citation From the May 20, 2020, edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends First

JILLIAN MELE (CO-ANCHOR): A White House tradition could come to an end. Former President Obama reportedly showing no interest in participating in the unveiling of his White House portrait. In the decadeslong tradition, the current U.S. president hosts an East Room ceremony, revealing his predecessor's portrait. Obama hosted former President George W. Bush in 2012. NBC reporting the ceremony isn't on President Trump's calendar — meaning Obama's portrait reveal could wait until 2025.