CNN and MSNBC Decline to Air Trump’s Live Remarks Hours After Second Indictment

By Mark Mwachiro 

On Tuesday night, CNN joined MSNBC in declining to take former President Donald Trump’s live remarks from his Bedminster, N.J. residence hours after being indicted in Florida federal court over his mishandling of government documents.

Both news networks decided to monitor Trump’s comments and air the parts that they deemed necessary or newsworthy. MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, who fronted the network’s special coverage, said, “We are here to bring you the news. It hurts our ability to do that if we live broadcast what we fully expect in advance to be a litany of lies and false accusations, no matter who says them.”

Over at CNN, Anderson Cooper said the network would monitor Trump’s remarks and bring the viewers anything they deemed newsworthy.

Jake Tapper further explained the rationale for not taking Trump’s speech live by saying, “he says a lot of things, frankly, that are not true and sometimes potentially dangerous.”

CNN and MSNBC were the only networks to refrain from carrying Trump’s comments live on Tuesday night. Fox News, NewsNation, Newsmax, Spectrum News, and C-SPAN 2 all took his remarks live, which were all also shown live on international news networks, including BBC News, Sky News, CNBC World, Al Arabiya, and Al Jazeera.

This is the second time MSNBC has not televised Trump’s public comments live. In April, during the ex-president’s first indictment in New York, the network refused to air his remarks live, choosing to monitor and air portions it deemed newsworthy. CNN, on the other hand, went live with Trump at that time, a move endorsed by its former CEO Chris Licht.

Fox News noted their rivals’ respective decisions, showing a lower third during Trump’s speech which stated, “Trump’s remarks ignored by other networks.”

Earlier in the day, anchors from CNN and MSNBC instructed their control rooms to pull away from showing the former president, who stopped at a famous Cuban restaurant in Miami after his Florida courtroom appearance, noting the decreasing news value of the situation.

Meanwhile, Fox News generated controversy by showing a chyron towards the end of the 8 p.m. hour, Fox News Tonight, that referred to President Biden as a “wannabe dictator,” adding he had “his political rival arrested.” The lower third was shown as the current and former presidents were both making remarks at the same time.

The chyron appeared on-screen for 27 seconds, and remained for the first 15 seconds of the network’s 9 p.m. hour, Hannity.


Fox News, for its part, said in a statement to news outlets, “The chyron was taken down immediately and was addressed.”