CNN’s Brian Stelter unironically said platforms cannot be given “to those lying to our faces,” while closing out his final episode of “Reliable Sources” on Sunday.
The network announced Thursday that Stelter would host his final episode of “Reliable Sources” and then leave the company. CNN’s new boss, Chris Licht, had previously expressed the need to get rid of certain on-air personalities who are perceived as “partisan,” including Stelter and Jim Acosta.
In his closing remarks, Stelter discussed the need for “media criticism and debate and discussion,” saying “the media ecosystem in 2022 is garbage” yet “spectacular.”
“The hard part is sorting out the treasure from the trash. These are thorny complicated things. I didn’t have all the answers. I didn’t even have all the questions.” (RELATED: ‘Sealed His Own Fate’: Joe Concha Calls Out Brian Stelter After Announced Departure From CNN)
“I know it is not partisan to stand up for decency and democracy and dialogue. It is not partisan to stand up to demagogues. It is patriotic. We must make sure we don’t give platforms to those lying to our faces. But we must make sure that we’re representing the full spectrum of debate and what is going on in the country and the world.”
While Stelter spoke of the need to avoid giving platforms “to those lying to our faces,” Stelter and his now-former network have pushed a series of debunked claims.
Stelter only recently admitted that the Hunter Biden laptop scandal is not actually just some “right-wing media” story as previously claimed. Stelter was skeptical of the story in October of 2020, suggesting it was “tied to a Russian disinformation effort” to take down Biden.
“There’s a lot about this story that does not add up. And, I mean, for all we know, these emails were made up, or maybe some are real and some are fakes, we don’t know. But we do know that this is a classic example of the right-wing media machine.”
Stelter was put on the spot in April during a conference when a college student said “CNN pushed the Russian collusion hoax…the Jussie Smollett hoax” and “smeared Justice Kavanaugh as a rapist … and Nick Sandmann as a white supremacist.” The student also noted how the network dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop story.
Stelter claimed the student was “describing a different channel than the one” he watches.
“But I understand that it is a popular right-wing narrative about CNN.”