A New York Times writer said in an interview Sunday the only honest way for his paper to cover President Trump is to give him negative coverage.
Frank Bruni, appearing on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” with host Brian Stelter, was discussing a book by former New York Times editor Jill Abramson that confessed the paper has an “anti-Trump bent,” the Daily Wire reported.
Asked to respond to Abramson’s admission, Bruni said it’s been “blown out of proportion.”
Stelter, who acknowledged he formerly worked for the Times, asked, “But this idea that news coverage of Trump is negative, is too negative, where does the truth lie there?”
Bruni replied: “I disagree wholeheartedly with that. He’s a singular president. He was a singular candidate. No one has lied like him, I mean at that altitude. No one has had the sort of ethical problems that he does, no one has had the areas of ignorance. To call that out accurately is to end up with a body of coverage that is unusually negative, but it absolutely appropriate to the man and the situation at hand.”
Bruni insisted honesty required the Times’ coverage of Trump to be negative.
“Anti-Trump connotes driven by some sort of animus regardless of the facts. I don’t think we’ve been anti-Trump,” he said. “I think we have been negative, and I think that’s the only honest way to cover this president.”
Asked if the “tone is sometimes off,” Bruni admitted it was a problem.
“Yes, I think the one way in which we leave ourselves vulnerable is our tone can become mocking and sneering, and I don’t mean just on the opinion pages where that’s not so unusual but sometimes in news coverage,” the Times writer said.
“When we do that we hurt ourselves because we give his supporters a way to say, ‘Look, they can’t give him a fair shake because they feel so negatively toward him.’ So I do think we have to watch our tone.”