Cable networks are making criticism of the president a lucrative business. Two prime examples? CNN’s decision to hire disgraced FBI official Andrew McCabe — and its fawning coverage of former Illinois Rep. Joe Walsh.
McCabe was fired by the FBI for lying at least four times, including three times under oath. He is now suing the FBI and the Justice Department, claiming that his termination was because of political pressure from the president.
CNN doesn’t care that McCabe’s credibility is in the toilet for being a notorious liar. He hates the president, and that seems to be their only real requirement for contributors.
It isn’t just CNN that has created a market for people who hate the president. Most networks are making it alluringly lucrative to turn on the president, and it is painfully obvious to watch.
As someone who runs a communications firm for a living, it is extremely clear how beneficial it is for a public figure’s career to come out against the president. The amount of airtime you receive is invaluable for someone looking for fame — or to restore a reputation that had been destroyed by those very same media organizations.
Seemingly every day, a new figure who once worked with the president is granted millions of dollars in free air time to knock their former boss. It doesn’t really matter if you simply shined his shoes on a few occasions or worked directly in the Oval Office. The media will eat it up either way. For someone selling a book, running for office, or just wanting a little attention, the benefits of trashing President Trump would be tough for anyone lacking principles or integrity to pass up.
We have seen it time and time again. From Omarosa Manigault Newman — who suddenly despised the president when she had a book she needed to sell — to Barbara Res, the former Trump Organization executive who is now making the rounds on cable television despite her former obscurity. Res has been plastered across millions of television screens simply for calling the president a “snowflake.”
It isn’t just traitors who are bestowed a chance to revive their reputations that the media previously slaughtered. If you’re a Republican who hates the president, there are dozens of producers who would love to book you for an interview.
Take, for example, Walsh, who is now mounting a primary challenge against President Trump. Walsh called President Obama a “stealth Muslim” as recently as 2016, and he complained in 2014 about not being allowed to use the “n-word” in polite company. He has also referred to members of the LGBTQ community as “constitutional terrorists.”
These views and statements would have liberal elites frothing at the mouth and coming for any supporter of the president with torches and pitchforks — but not a Republican who hates Trump. No, they get a pass. None of these previous remarks were given the time of day by the liberal media. CNN didn’t question him on his record at all.
Walsh, as soon as the rumors started swirling that neoconservative never-Trump war-hawk Bill Kristol was backing him to run a primary challenge against the president, suddenly became a media darling. The former Tea Party Republican was no longer a “racist” or monster. He was the talk of every major morning show as someone could potentially rip some right-wing votes away from the president in 2020. A huge change for the radio host who once got kicked off the air for using racial slurs.
Another example of this phenomenon is Michigan Rep. Justin Amash, who transformed from a non-notable member of Congress to an instant sensation with the media when he called for Trump’s impeachment. He was paraded around cable news like a brave and noble saint.
There’s also former Jeff Flake, another former Republican senator who had an 18 percent approval rating in 2017. Republicans and Democrats alike disliked Flake — until he became a major Trump-basher. Flake’s appearances in the media skyrocketed and he is now a contributor for CBS News.
Former President George W. Bush has received the same treatment. Once reviled by the left as someone who embodied evil for the wars he got us into and the financial crash, he is now portrayed in a glowing light every time he does something as simple as handing Michelle Obama a cough drop. So what changed? He trashed “Trumpism” of course.
There are entire television shows based on this model of never-Trump Republicans despite his high approval rating within the party. On “The View,” the two “Republicans” spend nearly all of their time bashing the president to gain acceptance from their audience and their peers. Their viewers are left with a sense that the right is weak and that they secretly know the Democrats are the real “good guys.” They don’t even bother to pretend to fight back against the insane progressive agenda that is presented on the show each day. They have traded in their souls and their party. At least they get to be on television!
On MSNBC, we have Joe Scarborough, a former Republican congressman from Florida who is now a Trump-hating liberal.
None of these people represent the average GOP voter, but it doesn’t matter. They make “orange man” look “bad.”
As people watch the media stomp on their reputations, those who are weak in their beliefs will most certainly be tempted to take the establishment press up on the redemption they are offered. As long as nobody calls it out for what it is, these viral trash-—talkers will just keep on coming.
Adam Weiss (@AdamMatthew) is the CEO of AMW PR, a New York political strategy and communications firm. His firm has represented Kimberly Guilfoyle, Judge Jeanine Pirro, Corey Lewandowski, David Bossie, Anthony Scaramucci and more.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.