By now, we’re all familiar with the usual timeline of a Donald Trump tweet: pundit says something inflammatory on Fox News, Trump watches it on TV, then tweets about it a few hours later. This is almost a given for propaganda coming out of Fox, but on Monday, however, the culprit was ABC, thanks to the networks softball interview with Rep. Liz Cheney on Sunday where the word treason was tossed around without so much as a follow-up. Not great!
Here’s the original clip, and how it was presented by ABC:
There’s a pretty clear problem here. ABC News Politics tweets out a clip Cheney hitting one of Trump’s favorite punching bags—FBI agents Strozk and Page—and tossing the word “treason” into the mix. Rather than, you know, pushing back immediately on an objectively false statement, ABC’s Martha Raddatz lets it go, and then her network frames the clip with Cheney’s statement unchallenged on social media.
The Hill writes up the post from there, and also fails to challenge Cheney’s statement. For the record, this is not a difficult follow-up: treason is a very specifically defined crime, Strozk and Page were not at the “highest levels” of the FBI, and their correspondence referenced Trump’s activity during his campaign, not while he was a sitting president. It is stupid to let that slide! Nevertheless:
Treason is, as we know, like catnip for Trump. He’s been shouting about it at every possible opportunity:
And my personal favorite:
Great job to everyone involved!