Donald Trump’s town hall
Lies, ridicule and applause from a pliable audience, the ex-president gave the audience what they came for, much to the discredit of CNN.
On Wednesday night, Donald Trump demonstrated why he leads the 2024 Republican field. The audience was his from “hello”. The town hall was a prime-time infomercial. Kaitlan Collins, the moderator, was no match. For good measure, he called her a “nasty person” and questioned her intelligence.
Trump arrived amid a standing ovation and repeatedly tangled with CNN’s Collins. The 45th president repeated the lies that birthed the insurrection and repeatedly asserted the 2016 election was “rigged”.
Trump beatified Ashli Babbitt, the Capitol rioter shot dead and committed to pardoning most of the January 6 rioters. For Trump and his minions, law and order hinges on “who” and “whom”. As for E Jean Carroll, Trump ridiculed her and the $5m verdict. She was a “whack job”, he said.
The surprise from CNN’s town hall with Donald Trump wasn’t Trump. It was CNN. What could they have been thinking? Everything was wrong.
If you’re going to host Trump, have him face a dogged questioner. That wasn’t Kaitlan Collins. Trump talked over her, insulted her and simply ignored her, as CNN should have predicted.
And why hold a town hall composed mostly of Republicans? Instead of a structure that would challenge a candidate on the issues, CNN chose a format that favors an audience receptive and primed to all of Trump’s lies, insults and racism.
What was CNN thinking for launching the nightmare of the next presidential election so early. What’s the rush? What was behind it all? Definitely not journalistic excellence! Ratings? An attempt to fill in a Trump void that currently exists on Fox?
Whatever it was, it was the return of a bad memory illustrating that particular convergence of mass-media authoritarianism and populist entertainment that defines the so-called charm of Donald Trump.
Donald Trump’s town hall told us, on the one hand, that the 76-year-old hasn’t grown up much.
Michel Ouellette JMD, ll.l., ll.m.
Systemic Strategic Planning / Regulatory Compliance / Crisis & Reputation Management
Phone: 1. 613.539.1793
Michel Ouellette / J. Michael Dennis is a Former Attorney, a Trial Scientist, a Crisis & Reputation Management Expert, a Public Affairs & Corporate Communications Specialist, a Warrior for Common Sense and Free Speech.
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