On Monday, the big story on almost every news network was the first indictments in Robert Mueller’s investigation into the Trump campaign’s possible collusion with Russia.
Almost every news network.
While CNN and MSNBC had wall-to-wall coverage of the indictments of former Trump campaign chair Paul Manafort, Manafort’s business associate Rick Gates and, most dramatically, former Trump foreign-policy adviser George Papadopolous, Fox News delved into the big Google emoji scandal.
Did you miss it? Apparently Google’s new cheeseburger emoji has the cheese underneath the patty instead of atop it. That was one of the stories broadcast in the 8 a.m. hour, while Manafort was being driven to surrender to authorities with TV cameras in tow. In other junk-food news, that hour Fox reported on this year’s most popular Halloween candy: Reese’s peanut butter cups.
At noon, Fox turned to Hillary Clinton and discrediting the controversial “Steele dossier” that was funded by the Democrats after it was funded by a Republican. By 12:45 p.m., Fox began discussing the subject of Russia — in a segment that questioned Robert Mueller’s fitness for the investigation, titled “Credibility in Question,” with onscreen graphics like “Mueller facing questions over his role as FBI director during Obama-era Russian uranium deal.”
One tweet summed it up:
— Josh Sánchez (@jnsanchez)
Ironically, on Oct. 7, Trump tweeted his displeasure with what he called one-sidedness in the media, seeming to advocate for the return of the Fairness Doctrine, which was killed in the 1980s by Ronald Reagan.
“Late Night hosts are dealing with the Democrats for their very ‘unfunny’ & repetitive material, always anti-Trump! Should we get Equal Time?” he wrote. “More and more people are suggesting that Republicans (and me) should be given Equal Time on T.V. when you look at the one-sided coverage?”
The Fairness Doctrine required TV stations to present controversial matters of public importance in a way that was honest and balanced in the view of the Federal Communications Commission. It required that contrasting viewpoints be presented in news stories. If the doctrine were reinstated, Fox News as currently known would cease to exist.