CNN’s Jim Acosta and Jake Tapper both predicted in new interviews that the media will change under the incoming Biden administration, arguing that the new president will likely provide for less combative coverage.
Mr. Acosta, the network’s chief White House correspondent who has repeatedly made headlines for his confrontations with President Trump and even wrote a book about his contentious relationship with the current administration, told The Atlantic in a piece published Tuesday that he “couldn’t stomach” the president’s attacks on the press and his “fake news” tagline.
“The drama has made him famous,” The Atlantic’s McKay Coppins reports, “but Acosta said he doesn’t expect to bring the same crusading style to his coverage of the next administration.”
“I don’t think the press should be trying to whip up the Biden presidency and turn it into must-see TV in a contrived way,” Mr. Acosta told the outlet.
“If that sounds like a double standard,” Mr. Coppins reports, “Acosta told me it’s not partisan — it’s a matter of professional solidarity. In his view, Trump’s campaign to discredit the press has constituted a ‘nonstop national emergency,’ one that required a defiant response.”
“If being at the White House is not an experience that might merit hazard pay,” Mr. Acosta said, “then perhaps it is going to be approached differently.”
Meanwhile, Mr. Tapper, CNN’s chief Washington correspondent, told CNN host Brian Stelter during “Reliable Sources” Sunday night that he doesn’t expect to have to dedicate as much time aggressively fact-checking the Biden administration as he did for Mr. Trump.
“Donald Trump, because of his disruptions and the way he disrupted just how presidents and public figures behave, and his actions to change the way that the news media writ large behaves … We felt in many ways the need to do more aggressive fact-checking,” Mr. Tapper said. “The monologues … it’s basically a time to just turn to the camera and just present some facts in a way that might clear up where there is obfuscation whether it’s about matters of decency or matters of fact.
“I don’t know that we’re going to have the need to continue to do those quite the same way in a Biden administration. Maybe we will,” he continued. “I guess it’s entirely possible that this will happen, and we’ll be doing it. But I kind of suspect that news media coverage will change as a more, you know, ‘normal President’ takes office, whether it’s Joe Biden in 2021 or Nikki Haley in 2025, whatever. I mean, I think generally, there will be a return to some sort of non-Trump obsessive coverage.”
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