If the head of a news organization was longtime friends with the president to the point where he's regularly hanging out with him and visiting the Oval Office, the right-wing media would be screaming bloody murder -- that is, if the president was a Democrat.
It is, however, perfectly fine with conservatives if one of their own media people has a cozy relationship with the president. Which brings us to Christopher Ruddy.
That's taken to the next level in a March 1 Newsmax article, which announced that "President Trump met with former ambassador Nancy Brinker and Newsmax Media CEO Christopher Ruddy at the Oval Office Wednesday afternoon," where they claimed to have discussed "initiatives for cancer research to find a cure for the disease." As it just so happens, according to the article's final paragraph, "Brinker also hosts a Newsmax TV interview program."
(The rest of us might know Brinker as the founder of breast cancer research fund-raising group Susan G. Komen for the Cure; she left the organization following a massive backlash against Komen's attempt to cut off funding to Planned Parenthood.)
Over the weekend, following Trump's tweets making unsubstantiated allegations that President Obama wiretapped Trump Tower during the election, Ruddy opined on the issue in a March 5 column by effectively touting the access he has to Trump:
When I woke up Sunday, I thought the morning news shows would all be talking about the unusual, perhaps dangerous, decision of the Obama administration to wiretap the offices of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump.
I’ve been watching Chuck Todd’s “Meet the Press” as I write this. There is actually little talk about this unprecedented wire-tapping and even less worry over it.
New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, usually thoughtful, just told Chuck Todd he found it is “shocking” that Trump disclosed the wiretapping claim on Twitter.
But Friedman offered no shock that such a wiretap might have taken place!
I spoke with the President twice yesterday about the wiretap story. I haven’t seen him this pissed off in a long time. When I mentioned Obama “denials” about the wiretaps, he shot back: “This will be investigated, it will all come out. I will be proven right.”
The Washington Post reported that Ruddy's contacts with Trump occurred "on the golf course and later at dinner Saturday."
Ruddy then invoked a schizophrenic pro-Trump talking point: The Russians "outrageously interfered in the U.S. election," which is something "I take very seriously," but it "did not change the election result," and "the media is continually trying to create" the narrative that it did.
Ruddy huffed: "This week, President Trump gave a bold and inclusive speech to Congress. It won wide praise. The Democrats don’t want Trump to succeed. Hence, all the smokescreens." He apparently forgot that his organization spent the past eight years fueling smokescreens with the goal of keeping Obama from succeeding.
If a "liberal media" executive was touting the same kind of access to a Democratic president that Ruddy is with Trump, right-wingers would not be silent. Instead, he gets a pass.