CNN's New Day highlights how the Fox News propaganda mill downplays Roy Moore's sexual misconduct, but hypes Uranium One “scandal”
Chris Cuomo: "These are pundits, not journalists"
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From the November 16 edition of CNN's New Day:
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BRIAN STELTER: Certainly, right-wing media outlets don't want to have to talk about Roy Moore. They would much rather talk about anything else.
ALISYN CAMEROTA (CO-HOST): Hillary Clinton, for instance.
STELTER: Hillary Clinton when possible and whenever possible. But, to the extent that they have to deal with this controversy, we are not seeing a lot of leadership from these right-wing talk show hosts. We are seeing some hedging, some punting. I thought really what Sean Hannity did last night, was he punted the issue in some ways over to President Trump.
CAMEROTA: Because he had said he had given Roy Moore 24 hours. Twenty-four hours to prove with some evidence -- show us some evidence of why we believe you. Time is up.
STELTER: Time's up, and yet at the end of the hour, Hannity said it's going to be up to the voters of Alabama. That is: a) True, but also the cliche that I see a lot of commentators holding on to. This isn't up to me, it's up to the voters. Well, actually people like Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh, like them or not, they are viewed as leaders in this conservative media world. They are viewed as leaders by people like President Trump. We know that the president takes advice from these voices on radio and television. So, I know they'd prefer to be entertainers, prefer not to talk about this, prefer to let the voters decide, but we are actually not seeing a lot of leadership from these hosts, from these commentators, which is notable, given that Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan and other GOP leaders have spoken out. They are accountable to the voters in a year or so. These hosts are accountable every day to their audience. They look at the ratings, they look at the page views. Maybe they are concerned that they don't know where their audience stands on this issue, but it's a very tough situation for these hosts who, again, normally would rather just talk about Hillary Clinton's alleged scandals.
CHRIS CUOMO (CO-HOST): It's not tough. It's not tough, Brian. These are choices that they make. These are pundits, not journalists and they make choices about what's going to work for their audience. They like to pander, and sometimes you wind up getting hoisted on your own petard. We saw that with the Uranium One thing. So, Shep Smith decides to do what we do all the time, which is to test what an allegation is about one of these things. Uranium One is a complete red herring for people, and people on Fox tout about it. Some of them call it the "real Russia scandal," which is just a bunch of b.s., and now Shep comes forward and does the job of journalism, and shows how that's not true. What does that mean for Fox?
STELTER: He is increasingly sticking out like a sore thumb on Fox News. I think it's great that Shep Smith is there. It makes a lot of sense that he is a real journalist trying to explain what is really going on in the midst of all these pro-Trump opinion shows. But he does stick out like a sore thumb, and it must create some tension behind the scenes.