CNN’s decision to host a live town hall with former President Donald Trump this Wednesday drew condemnation from MSNBC anchor Joy Reid and her two guests on Monday’s episode of “The ReidOut.”
Angelo Carusone, from progressive media watchdog group Media Matters for America, and conservative pundit Charlie Sykes, joined Reid in questioning the network’s move and Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav’s assertion that “we need to hear both voices.”
“Republicans, Democrats, insurrectionists, everybody’s on the air,” said Reid.
“I get a little uncomfortable with the false equivalencies and false balance,” responded Carusone, suggesting CNN was attempting to “mollify” its right-wing critics.
Giving Trump airtime and platform “feels like a laundering,” he added.
Reid agreed. “It feels to me that this is a pretty open attempt by CNN to push itself to the right and make itself attractive and show its belly to MAGA and to conservatives hoping that they will tune in,” she said.
Sykes, meanwhile, described it as “horrifically bad judgment.”
“Let’s be clear about this. This is not journalism. This is entertainment,” he said, lamenting how CNN will be unable to filter or control Trump’s disinformation.
The network has given Trump “a full hour of airtime and Donald Trump knows entertainment,” Sykes added. “He’s allergic to journalism and that’s why he’s going to love this town hall.”