Because there were so many, it’s hard to pinpoint which CNN segment about President Trump during his four years in office was the most ridiculously stupid.
Some might say it was their frequent references to Trump’s eating habits, as they did after the successful U.S. strike against Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Iraq in January 2020. At the time, reporter Kaitlan Collins wrote a short piece alerting readers to the fact that Trump was dining on meatloaf and ice cream at Mar-a-Lago with other GOP leaders when he found out about the strike.
She then put the airstrike/food correlation “in perspective”:
Putting this airstrike in perspective: The scene Friday was similar to the one after Trump gave the order for American forces to carry out the missile strike on a Syrian airfield in the spring 2017.
After that strike, Trump went into great detail about the chocolate cake he had with Chinese President Xi Jinping, who was there for a summit, when he informed him about the series of tomahawk missiles.
Remember when CNN went crazy over ice cream gate? Lol pic.twitter.com/8Eq27AEy24
— Boko Harambe ⚔️🍁🔫 (@BokoHarambe) February 14, 2021
One CNN criticism of Trump that sticks out in my mind more than most was the network’s obsession with the former president’s typos, by their resident media hall monitor Brian Stelter especially. For example, here’s what Stelter said about What Trump’s Typos Mean during a November 2019 “Reliable Sources” episode:
Look, in 2015, only 18 misspellings, only 18 errors. But there’s been a huge spike since he took office. Of course, if he can’t get the small stuff right, people worry about the big stuff. And he gets a lot of the small things wrong. Look, the word he misspells most often is counsel as in White House counsel or special counsel.
He actually even had an “expert” on his program to analyze Trump’s typos in comparison to other politicians:
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) November 3, 2019
— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) November 3, 2019
That wasn’t the only time Stelter made an issue out of Trump’s typos, either. In April 2018, Stelter did a segment on “why Trump’s spelling errors matter,” and talked about how “the president’s spelling mistakes are infamous at this point.”
He acknowledged at one point that he knew in the scheme of things the typos shouldn’t be considered a big deal, “but I do think it’s important because it speaks to — if you can’t get the small stuff right, can you get the big stuff right like a North Korea summit?” In a back and forth with panelists, Stelter played the “some say card” in alleging that “some people suggested he makes errors on purpose, on purpose in order to appeal to ordinary folks.”
With all of that in mind, we turn to this past Sunday’s “Reliable Sources” broadcast. Take a look at these screengrabs of the typo in the chyron:
Brian Stelter Apr 23, 2018:
Why typos matter for the president AND the press: If you can’t get the small stuff right, can you be trusted to get the big stuff right?
Brian Stelter’s show this morning: pic.twitter.com/bWov3dU5Fn
— johnny dollar (@johnnydollar01) March 7, 2021
Has no one noticed the Twitter handle is spelled wrong? https://t.co/vnMTyHjjQN
— Ashe Short (@AsheSchow) March 8, 2021
For anyone wondering, it’s not some CNN employee behind the scenes coming up with his chyrons. It’s Stelter himself. Oops.
In addition to the Sunday typo, my RedState colleague Brad Slager caught Stelter at the time of his November 2019 “Trump’s typos” rant in a rather remarkable self-own:
This is the kind of intrepid work @BrianStelter occupies himself with, the man who described these digital malaprops as “Misspelling Errors”. Cannot make this up…
Keep up the banal work, Tater! https://t.co/CHe3k3vakR pic.twitter.com/W71SEoWpgi
— Brad Slager- Tavernus Bourbonicus Neanderthal (@MartiniShark) December 16, 2019
Between the spelling error that happened on the Sunday program and Stelter’s past admissions that he frequently makes typos himself, What Does This All Mean? I mean, if Stelter can’t get the small stuff right, can he get the big stuff right like doing actual media reporting and all?
These are your silly rules, Stelter, your rules. But we’re glad to enforce them when the occasion calls for it.