When CNN made the uncharacteristic decision to provide a forum for 2024 GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump, critics — including some of the network’s on-air personalities — decried the on-air event.
Weeks later, however, the same network did not face similar internal or external backlash for hosting Republican White House hopeful Chris Christie despite the fact that he is generally polling in single-digit territory near the back of a crowded primary field.
Of course, the former New Jersey governor has something in common with the prevailing sentiment at CNN and much of the rest of the mainstream media: a deep disdain for Trump.
Anderson Cooper, who previously said that he understood why so many viewers “expressed deep anger and disappointment” in the network’s decision to air a “disturbing” town hall featuring Trump, went on to serve as the moderator for the Christie event in June. During the forum, Christie was given ample opportunity to verbally attack Trump.
“He has shown himself, particularly in his post-presidency, to be completely self-centered, completely self-consumed and doesn’t give a damn about the American people, in my point of view,” Christie asserted.
“Loser, loser, loser.” Chris Christie rips into Donald Trump during CNN Town Hall. (Video: CNN) pic.twitter.com/w1tmUsNR2y
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) June 13, 2023
Politico joined in with similarly effusive coverage of Christie’s anti-Trump campaign, publishing an article that seemed to criticize him only for not being apologetic enough for his 2016 support of the GOP presidential nominee.
Christie’s current presidential bid is the most interesting candidacy in the Republican primary, and the most important.
As writer Michael Kruse gushed: “Christie’s current presidential bid is the most interesting candidacy in the Republican primary, and the most important.”
Anti-Trump Republicans have long found a welcoming platform within the mainstream media where they frequently echo the same partisan talking points of left-leaning hosts and panelists.
The mainstream media’s willingness to provide so much coverage to Christie’s long-shot campaign is even more notable in comparison with the way Democratic White House hopefuls Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Marianne Williamson are treated by the cable news outlets.
Although both of President Joe Biden’s challengers are polling higher in the Democratic primary than Christie is in the GOP race, neither seem to be receiving invitations to appear on the air.
As Williamson concluded: “CNN and MSNBC aren’t having me on because they’re chopping wood and carrying water for the [Democratic National Committee].”