Rebecca Berg | Media Matters for America

Rebecca Berg

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  • Television News Praises Trump’s “Symbolic Coup” In Carrier Jobs Announcement

    Indiana-Based Company Convinces Trump To Give It Taxpayer Money, Still Moves Many Of Its Jobs To Mexico

    ››› ››› CRAIG HARRINGTON

    Broadcast and cable news personalities rushed to credit President-elect Donald Trump for closing a deal with the Indiana-based manufacturer Carrier that provides the for-profit company with millions of taxpayer dollars while allowing it to still outsource hundreds of jobs to Mexico. Journalists and reporters framed the agreement as a “symbolic coup” and “unadulterated win” for Trump’s incoming administration even as they acknowledged that supporting a relatively small number of jobs at taxpayer expense is an unsustainable manufacturing policy.

  • Here Are More Investigative Pieces Debate Moderators Should Read Before The Debates

    ››› ››› ALEX KAPLAN

    In light of the upcoming second presidential debate, here are some of the most important new investigative pieces written about Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump -- which debate moderators should read as part of their preparation. The articles examine Trump’s nearly billion dollar loss which could have allowed him to not pay federal income taxes for 18 years, potential illegalities and improprieties stemming from Trump’s use of his charitable foundation, Trump’s sexism on his TV shows and in his businesses, Trump doing business with an Iranian bank involved in terrorism, and Trump violating the U.S. trade embargo with Cuba.

  • Fox Ignores Report That Trump’s Modeling Agency Encouraged Immigrants To Work Without Documents

    Blog ››› ››› JULIE ALDERMAN

    Fox News ignored a report from Mother Jones revealing that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s modeling agency, Trump Model Management, “profited from using foreign models who came to the United States on tourist visas that did not permit them to work here.” The report got attention from MSNBC and CNN, where it was discussed as a “particularly awkward” point of hypocrisy for Trump ahead of his speech on immigration.

    Mother Jones published the report, titled “Former Models For Donald Trump’s Agency Say They Violated Immigration Rules And Worked Illegally, on August 30, one day before Trump is scheduled to give a policy speech on immigration. According to the report, one model who was represented by Trump Model Management said that the agency is “the most crooked agency I’ve ever worked for, and I’ve worked for quite a few.” Another model added that “Trump has been fooling American voters with his anti-immigrant rhetoric, given that his own agency had engaged in the practices he has denounced.” Mother Jones also reported that the models “said Trump's agency encouraged them to deceive customs officials about why they were visiting”:

    Two of the former Trump models said Trump's agency encouraged them to deceive customs officials about why they were visiting the United States and told them to lie on customs forms about where they intended to live. Anna said she received a specific instruction from a Trump agency representative: "If they ask you any questions, you're just here for meetings."

    Organized efforts to evade laws regulating immigrant work were added by Congress, according to the American Bar Association, to the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) in 1996 outlawing “any act that violates section 274 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (entitled 'Bringing in and harboring certain aliens'), provided that the act is done for financial gain.”

    In the 24 hours after the report was published, CNN and MSNBC devoted several segments to the allegations, highlighting the discrepancies between Trump’s immigration proposals and the ways his own business practices reportedly abused the immigration system. CNN’s Alisyn Camerota asked Trump’s running mate Indiana Gov. Mike Pence if the report “point[s] out the hypocrisy” of Trump’s call to end or place severe restrictions on the H-1B visa program. CNN political analyst Rebecca Berg pointed out that the story highlighted “some inconsistencies between what Donald Trump is saying and what he's actually done in his business career.” MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow called the report “particularly awkward,” given that Trump is “trying to reclaim what’s supposedly [his] signature issue, right, [his] hardline stance on illegal immigrants.”

    Fox News did not cover the report or its findings in the 24 hour period after it was published.

  • CNN Panel Highlights Trump's Immigration Hypocrisy With Report Of Him Having Models Circumvent Immigration Law

    Chris Cuomo: Trump Has Claimed H1B Visas Are "Being Abused" And Yet That's What This Report Is "Accusing Him Of"

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    From the August 31 edition of CNN's New Day:

     

    CHRIS CUOMO (CO-HOST): Rebecca Berg, this other story, this Mother Jones story. It basically says, to Mark's description of the Clintons, you play by your own rules, that speculation. It seems to fall into that category with Donald Trump. This modeling agency that he has, women came forward saying they circumvented immigration law, they put us in these lousy apartments, and they were just milking the system and milking these women to modeland doing it on the cheap. How much do you think there there happens with this?

    REBECCA BERG: Well, it could be hugely consequential because it shows perhaps that there is some inconsistencies between what Donald Trump is saying and what he's actually done in his business career. But what we have seen with Donald Trump is that he likes to brag about taking advantage of loopholes in the law, not only when it comes to something like this, immigration rules, but also with taxation. And he's used the tax codes, as he said, to his advantage. And so if he can make the case that he was trying to take advantage of a broken system, there is a way that he could maybe maneuver this politically to a place where it's advantageous for him. 

    CUOMO: I don't know. It's not taxes though. 

    BERG: It's also something that Hillary Clinton --

    CUOMO: It's not taxes. These are the H1B visas that he's talked about being abused. He said, "I'm going to get rid of them because people abuse them and that's really wrong. We have to be tougher." That's what they're accusing him of in this piece. 

    ALISYN CAMEROTA (CO-HOST): Right I mean, basically that he had told the models who were coming into this country, "Just say that you're here for tourism." 

    CUOMO: Taking meetings. You're not working.

    CAMEROTA: "Yeah, you're taking meetings, you're trying to find an agent in this [INAUDIBLE] for tourism if they find your portfolio," because they really were coming in for work, "if they find your portfolio just say that you were looking for an agent." So is that a loophole or is that breaking the law? 

    MARK PRESTON: Well, it's clearly breaking the law, right? I mean in the end. I mean what Donald Trump, as Rebecca says, has said over and over again, "As a businessman, I'm going to take every chance I can to help myself out personally. But now that I'm running for president, I'm here to help you all out, and we will close these loopholes down." For some reason, that hasn't stuck to Donald Trump in this campaign, as a lot of things haven't stuck to Donald Trump.

    CUOMO: But working the taxes and breaking the law are two different things. Everybody wants to pay the least amount of taxes. We all get that. This could be something different. The question is, does it get that kind of traction that it needs?

    PRESTON: Right. And I would say this. Being in New York City with the tabloids, that could be his downfall in the sense that they could seize upon the story and run with it. 

    Related

    Mother Jones: Former Models For Donald Trump's Agency Say They Violated Immigration Rules And Worked Illegally

    Previously

    CNN's Chris Cuomo Highlights Trump’s Hypocrisy On Middle East Business Ventures

    Donald Trump’s Probable Immigration Plan Will Be Ripped Straight From Right-Wing Media

    This Is How Trump’s Closest Advisors Have Talked About Immigrants And Latinos

  • “Insanity”: Media Appalled After Trump Campaign Hires Breitbart Executive And Political Commentator

    ››› ››› JARED HOLT

    Media figures across the political spectrum expressed shock after reports that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump hired Breitbart News executive Stephen Bannon and political commentator Kellyanne Conway to head his campaign. Media said the hire makes the relationship between Trump and Breitbart “official” and labeled the move “insanity.”