CNN host Don Lemon defended calling President Trump a “bigot” and a “racist,” saying he was only speaking the truth and it doesn’t make the “CNN Tonight” host biased.
Lemon is billed by CNN as a nonpartisan anchor, but reguarly attacks the president with far-left opinion. Mediaite’s Aidan McLaughlin confronted Lemon’s recent rhetoric, specifically calling Trump a “bigot” and a “racist” during recent segments.
CNN’S DON LEMON CALLS TRUMP A BIGOT,’ ‘RACIST’: THOSE AREN’T OPINIONS, THOSE ARE FACTS’
“Do you think that journalists should be more forthright in how they describe Trump’s behavior? Or… critics would say that’s exposing their bias,” McLaughlin asked during Lemon’s appearance on “The Interview” podcast that was released on Thursday.
“How is being factual, bias? How is taking evidence and someone’s own words and their own actions, and their own policies, and just presenting it back to the public on television or whatever medium — whatever journalistic medium you happen to be in — How is that bias?” Lemon asked.
Lemon then cited Trump once referring to “s–thole” countries and claimed he mistreats African-Americans as examples of Trump’s racist actions. Lemon also referenced stories such as Trump’s role in the Central Park Five and a discrimination suit against his late father.
“How is that bias? That’s just the truth,” Lemon said. “Now, if the truth isn’t on your side, then … what this administration will do is say you’re biased and say that everything is negative because they don’t have the truth on their side.”
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Lemon then said that Trump started his political career by lying about there Barack Obama was born and calling some Mexicans rapists, “which is racism,” Lemon has said.
“It’s no wonder that this president’s coverage is befitting his actions, his words and his policies,” Lemon said. “His policies, his actions, his words … are negative and his press coverage is befitting of that.”
Lemon went on to defend CNN’s anti-Trump reputation.
“This man is the president of the United States and I think it’s very easy to say that CNN is negative or is anti-Trump, because the truth is not on Trump’s side, so he attacks us and we are here to tell people the truth,” Lemon said. “I don’t really understand how people will say CNN is biased and focuses on the negative of Trump.”
Just last month, CNN’s in-house media critic Brian Stelter was put on the spot when a teenage journalist asked about the network’s overly opinionated anchors.
Stelter appeared on “Raving Ryan” with host Ryan Anastasio, a Connecticut-based high-schooler who asserted during their lengthy discussion that people can “probably learn more” about current events from newspapers or watching news programs on the broadcast networks than watching cable news.
Stelter responded by saying “it depends. He said Anastasio’s claim about cable news is “too broad of a brush” and acknowledged there are shows “that are almost purely entertainment” that “only bring on one side.”
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“Do you think CNN does that too?” Anastasio interrupted.
“Uhhh… well, what shows are you talking about?” a puzzled Stelter asked.
“I think at times, you do have some very opinion-based shows at night time,” Anastasio explained.
“So, which ones?” Stelter responded.
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“I’d argue probably “Cuomo Prime Time,” “Don Lemon,” the 17-year-old reporter answered. “I wouldn’t say those are more news, I’d say a lot of them are more opinion-based shows, wouldn’t you agree?”
The “Reliable Sources” host said Cuomo and Lemon’s shows are “newscasts that have opinionated voices on them” but argued that terms like “newscast” and “opinion show” are outdated to describe CNN’s programming.
Fox News’ Joseph A. Wulfsohn contributed to this report.