U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted his dismay at Democratic 2020 contender Bernie Sander’s favorable reception during his Monday night town hall on Fox News. Trump tweeted Tuesday morning, “So weird to watch Crazy Bernie on @FoxNews. Not surprisingly, @BretBaier and the “audience” was so smiley and nice. Very strange, and now we have @donnabrazile?”
Sanders often received loud applause from the Fox audience, which also directly asked him questions. When grilled by an audience member whether or not the Democrats could go too far left and aid in Trump’s reelection, Sanders launched a stinging attack on Trump’s character. He said, “Whether you’re conservative or moderate or progressive, I don't think the American people are proud that we have a president who is a pathological liar. ...Trump cannot even tell the truth as to where his father was born.”
Bret Baier responded, “Thanks for watching Mr. President - we’d love to have you on a town hall soon — or even an interview on @SpecialReport —it’s been awhile. We cover all sides.”
Trump tweet comes weeks after media speculation that elements inside Fox News are turning away from the network’s perceived pro-Trump slant.
In late March, Gabriel Sherman reported in Vanity Fair that internal divisions are arising in Fox News’ coverage of Trump.
Sherman’s report came the day before 21st Century Fox sold off large assets to Disney and began trading under a new name — Fox Corp.
"Donald Trump's alliance with Fox News has been one of the few constants throughout his shambolic presidency," Sherman wrote. "But in recent days, that bond has shown signs of fraying.
"Reporters are telling management that we're being defined by the worst people on our air," Sherman wrote, citing a senior source in Fox News.
CNN reported the same week that former House Speaker Paul Ryan is joining the board of Fox Corp. Sherman reported that sources in Fox News see the appointment of Ryan and the hiring of ex-DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile as evidence of a shift away from its rigid pro-Trump line.
The report noted that the former Republican congressman and Rupert Murdoch have been friendly for many years, with the Fox supremo saying in 2014 that he had "particular admiration for" Ryan.
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