CBS’ Passport Propaganda And Trump: Beware The Government-Media Complex

WASHINGTON - JANUARY 20: CBS Evening News with Norah O'Donnell broadcasts live from Washington DC with continued coverage on Inauguration 2021.
Michele Crowe/CBS via Getty Images)

Is the legacy media ever embarrassed or angry that it consistently gets fed false information — and repeats it verbatim — in order to push anti-conservative narratives, or does it enjoy being a mouthpiece for the government?

Monday evening, CBS’ Norah O’Donnell implied that the Department of Justice (DOJ) did not take former President Donald Trump’s passport — contrary to his claims earlier in the day.

“According to a DOJ official, the FBI is NOT in possession of former President Trump’s passports,” O’Donnell tweeted. “We are also learning tonight that if any items not contained in the warrant were retrieved during the FBI search at Mar-a-Lago, they will be returned.”

Based on O’Donnell’s tweet, a reasonable person who still trusts the media would assume that the DOJ had never been in possession of Trump’s travel documents.

Yet immediately after O’Donnell’s tweet, Trump’s spokesperson Taylor Budowich released a screenshot of an email, apparently from the DOJ’s Jay Bratt, confirming that the government would be returning Trump’s expired passports, as well as his active diplomatic passport, that it had taken during the raid.

In other words, O’Donnell’s reporting wound up being false or at the very least wildly skewed to paint Trump as a liar.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the veteran reporter had yet to issue a clarifying remark to her initial claim. If she was fooled by a carefully parsed response from the DOJ, shouldn’t she be mad that she was tricked into misleading her audience and squandering her own credibility? Her silence leaves no reason to believe she won’t rely on the same unknown, unreliable source for future stories.

In reaction to the news, Megyn Kelly’s executive producer Steve Krakauer tweeted, “When you get this burned by an anonymous source, I just don’t understand why you continue to protect them.”

“They don’t look bad, you do,” he added.

Budowich tweeted Tuesday morning, “The evening anchor was once the pinnacle of journalism, but clearly @NorahODonnell is intent on changing that. After 16 hours and a TWITTER FACT CHECK, this massively viral and dishonest tweet stands.”

The reality is that folks like O’Donnell have gone from being “the pinnacle of journalism,” as Budowich put it, to being a part of what longtime radio host Michael Savage once called “the government-media complex.”

“The media ladies and gentlemen … is needed by you, and by me, by the public — very badly needed — to be and to remain a thorn in the side of the government,” Savage said in 1998. “In order to keep the government relatively honest, you need media that’s constantly poking at them. However, when the media instead becomes a thorn in the side of the skeptical private citizen, the media then becomes an arm of the government. Beware the government-media complex.”

Twenty-four years later, the problem has only worsened.

We now have years of media malfeasance about the Russiagate Hoax, Carter Page, COVID-related stories, the Covington Catholic Kids, and so many more stories that appear designed to smear Trump and other Republicans, not relay the truth.

If O’Donnell unintentionally spouted the government’s talking points, she owes us a correction. And she ought to be furious.

The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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