If the networks give Trump airtime for his immigration address, they are looking at providing Democrats rebuttal airtime on national television.
Maggie Haberman tweeted:
The networks are weighing options, including giving a response to Dems. But they have NOT agreed to this yet, despite POTUS claiming so. https://t.co/QKujUlNwib
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) January 7, 2019
Haberman’s tweet was in response to a flat-out lie from Trump:
I am pleased to inform you that I will Address the Nation on the Humanitarian and National Security crisis on our Southern Border. Tuesday night at 9:00 P.M. Eastern.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 7, 2019
Giving Democrats Equal Time Would Undercut Trump’s Lie
The whole point for the White House of Trump doing this national address is to give the president an unchecked platform on which to lie. If the networks give Democrats rebuttal time, Trump will lose his ability to spread his racist and false message about the crisis that he is trying to gin up on the border in an unfettered manner.
Democrats should get equal time because this president can’t be trusted to tell the truth on the nation’s airwaves. Television executives already know that if they carry Trump’s speech, he will lie.
If they feel like they have to provide airtime for the speech, which they don’t, but if they feel like they must, the best option is to provide Democrats with an equal platform to address the nation.
A Democratic rebuttal makes the Oval Office address must less attractive to Trump, as the television networks are making it clear that they are not trusting the nation’s airwaves to Donald Trump.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association