In a speech in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Donald Trump hit on a familiar (and fascistic) theme: his desire to suppress unfriendly media.
“Last night, it was amazing,” Trump said, referring to what was actually an underwhelming victory in the sparsely attended Iowa caucuses. “NBC and CNN refused to air my victory speech—think of it—because they are crooked, they’re dishonest, and, frankly, they should have their licenses, or whatever they have, taken away.”
Unsurprisingly, that was a lie. Both networks aired portions before cutting away to the other candidates’ speeches, which is how these things are typically covered. But Trump insisted he’d been unfairly singled out. “They put on Nikki Haley. She came in third, a distant third—like, I mean, a distant third,” Trump continued. “And they put on Ron DeSanctimonious [DeSantis], who came in a boring second.”
This type of dictatorial rhetoric isn’t new for Trump. For years, he’s been railing against the “fake news” and calling the free press “the true Enemy of the People,” the “opposition party,” and “a bunch of very dishonest, crooked bastards.” He has threatened to open a “treason” investigation into Comcast, the owner of MSNBC, for what he said is their “endless coverage of the now fully debunked SCAM known as Russia, Russia, Russia, and much else,” calling it “one big Campaign Contribution to the Radical Left Democrat Party.”
Coincidentally, on MSNBC Monday evening, Rachel Maddow explained why MSNBC and other networks “stopped giving an unfiltered live platform to remarks by former President Trump.”
“It is not out of spite. It is not a decision that we relish,” Maddow said. “It is a decision that we regularly revisit,” she continued. “And honestly, earnestly, it is not an easy decision, but there is a cost to us as a news organization of knowingly broadcasting untrue things. And that is a fundamental truth of our business and who we are.”
The Iowa primary took place Monday, and while traditional media outlets would like you to believe Trump won big the reality was anything but. Kerry and Markos talk about what the numbers really show and the possible ramifications for the rest of the primary season as well as the national election.