Topic: Media Research Center
For much of the 2016 campaign, the Media Research Center -- despite a nonprofit tax status that prohibits it from explicit involvement in politics -- repeatedly attacked Hillary Clinton for not holding a press conference at sufficient intervals during her presidential campaign, huffed that the questions weren't anti-Hillary enough when she did hold one, and even complained when an NPR media critic said she "may have a point" when there are other ways to hear from a candidate.
Flash forward to after the election, and the MRC is hypocritically cheering how Trump is showing new ways to hear from a candidate.
- MRC chief Brent Bozell celebrated how the media is "being neutered" and "neutralized" because "Donald Trump will go around them, not talk to them," adding: "Look, he has got 25 million Twitter followers and Facebook fans. He can converse directly with them. And if the media cover his posts, his tweets, they have got to cover what he said. That allows him to control the conversation."
- MRC VP Dan Gainor touted how Trump "doesn’t need the media, he is the media."
- Gainor later promoted Trump's "Twitter presidency," claiming that "I think the American public like the fact that he is speaking directly -- you know, typos and all."
Funny, Hillary never got love from the MRC for going around the media.
And after all the demands for Hillary to hold a presser, the MRC would be hypocritically happy if Trump never held another one.
In a tantrum following Buzzfeed's publication of an unverified dossier of salacious information about Trump, Bozell ranted that Trump is right to not hold pressers:
Any media outlet that does not produce a news story that declares BuzzFeed’s story fake news is giving aid and comfort to fake news and furthering its proliferation. This fiasco is exactly why the media’s ratings are in the toilet. It’s exactly why Donald Trump said the election was rigged and it’s also why Donald Trump hasn’t done many press conferences. BuzzFeed should stick to cat gifs for the foreseeable future until they figure out how to do journalism. And President-elect Trump shouldn't conduct any more press conferences unless and until the 'news' media start treating him fairly.
Actually, "unverified" does not equal "fake news." Remember, the claim of a Bill Clinton affair was unverified at the time the Drudge Report touted it.
Besides, Bozell doesn't want the media to give "fair" treatment -- he wants the media to be Trump's lapdogs, to uncritically report whatever he says and ignore any impropriety or scandal. You know, like how Bozell's "news" outlet, CNSNews.com, covered Trump during the campaign.
Bozell made this crystal clear when he declared in a Jan. 18 appearance on Fox News division Fox Business -- the preferred MRC outlet because it gives Bozell the uncritical coverage he demands the media give Trump -- that reporters are "enemies" of Trump:
These are people who are constantly against him. There is no semblance of objectivity going on. ... They are there as a hostile entity and if they’re going to be that hostile to him, the President-elect has the right, I think, to say, 'I'm not going to stand there, by you people who have no vestige of objectivity. I'm going to pick and choose who I want there.'
Bozell's view of the media has always been a partisan caricature designed to raise money and create a sense of victimhood among conservatives. The only "improvement" he has ever sought is the creation of more right-wing media bias. No wonder he flip-flopped to get behind Trump, who hates the media for not being right-wing stenographers as much as he does.