In this July 31, 2018, photo, Ivanka Trump, the daughter of Pres. Donald Trump walks on board Air Force One with Pres. Trump for a trip to Tampa, Fla., to attend a campaign rally at Andrews Air Force Base, Md. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
When last we left you with Chris Cillizza, he was being schooled by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) after the CNN editor-at-large tried to dunk on a tweet from President Trump about needing borders by claiming “Viruses don’t, uh, recognize borders.”
Sadly, Cillizza’s hot takes have not gotten any better, as evidenced by an “analysis” he did today about how “Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner don’t think the coronavirus rules apply to them”:
If you follow Ivanka on social media, you immediately get the sense that she is trying to project herself as just an average person.
Here she is on a date night with Jared!
Here she is wearing a fleece — and without makeup!https://t.co/Q1iAAAZvzy
— Chris Cillizza (@CillizzaCNN) April 16, 2020
In the piece, Cillizza tried to make his case by referencing some “discretionary travel” Ms. Trump and Kushner recently took, which was the subject of another journalistic masterpiece at the New York Times. Here’s what Cillizza wrote:
On April 8, just before noon, Ivanka Trump tweeted an inspirational message to fellow Jews preparing to celebrate a first night of Passover like no other — amid the social distancing and stay-at-home guidelines put in place to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.
“Tonight we gather for a Passover without precedent,” she wrote. “The group might be smaller, and the answer to ‘why is this night different’ might be unusual. But all across the world we shall sing our songs of freedom and together celebrate renewal.”
The sentiment was plain: Even though Ivanka was the daughter of the President of the United States and a senior adviser in the White House, she was still in the same boat as everyone else: Holding a different sort of Passover this year because of the rules that everyone had to follow to stay safe.
Except, well, she wasn’t. Later in the day on April 8, Ivanka — along with her husband and fellow White House top adviser Jared Kushner and their three children — broke the guidelines against “discretionary travel” by driving from Washington to the Trump hotel in Bedminster, New Jersey, according to The New York Times.
This is a do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do situation — a classic example of the way in which President Donald Trump (and his brood) have behaved throughout their lives but especially since coming to the White House. The message, time and time again, is that the rules are important and everyone needs to follow them — unless, of course, you are related to Trump, in which case you get to make your own rules.
According to the Times, “a White House press officer confirmed that Ms. Trump and her immediate family celebrated Passover “in private with her family” at a “closed-down facility considered to be a family home.”
The problem with Cillizza’s and the NYT’s “gotcha” journalism here is that they’re garbage takes. Travel is not banned, last I checked, and as long as Ms. Trump and her family were social distancing wherever they were, they weren’t breaking any “rules” by celebrating Passover the way they did. Furthermore, what Cillizza and the NYT were both referencing were not “rules”, they were guidelines. There is a big difference.
For example, the CDC’s guidelines now are that you should wear a mask when you go out in public. Not everyone does this. I would even bet you money that not even Cillizza nor any other “journalist” dunking on Ms. Trump and her family wear masks every time they venture outside.
In fact, we don’t even have to make that bet, do we? Because it doesn’t sound like CNN’s Chris Cuomo was obeying CDC guidelines when he broke his Wuhan coronavirus quarantine on Easter Sunday to spend time outside, but you don’t see Cillizza calling out his colleague on that, do you?
Kinda fascinating that Cillizza is chiding Ms. Trump for the “one set of rules for the Trumps, another for everyone else” privilege thing, but yet when one of his own does it it’s not worth mentioning.
I guess we can label that “journalistic privilege” or something, right?
In any event, Twitter users took Cillizza to the woodshed in response:
Hard hitting journalism at its finest right here folks
— Steve Christle (@schristle2) April 16, 2020
Thanks for providing further evidence that CNN is not a real news organization. https://t.co/z6nMSZdp2l
— RBe (@RBPundit) April 16, 2020
Oh Cris she hasn't appeared on tv telling us how wonderful a time this is. Showing us a $20,000 refrigerator filled with $12 a pint ice cream now has she. Imagine all that on a Congressional salary.
— Wayne (@Wayne952) April 16, 2020
This is serious news, guys! CNN is definitely non-partisan and just being objective!
— SaltySnowPepper (@SaltySnowPepper) April 16, 2020
Dude – this is pathetic.
— SoCalConservativeGal (@SoCalViews) April 16, 2020
To say the very least…
(Hat tip: Twitchy)