CNN host Brian Stelter was ridiculed online for a softball question to White House press secretary Jen Psaki that some labeled as “propaganda” and bootlicking.”
During CNN’s “Reliable Sources” talk show that aired on Sunday, Stelter asked Psaki, “What does the press get wrong when covering Biden’s agenda? When you watch the news, when you read the news, what do you think we get wrong?”
Psaki responded to the unchallenging question, “Look, I think some of our muscles have atrophied a little bit over the last few years, and there isn’t a lot of recent memory on how long it takes to get legislation forward, or how messy the process of negotiating and the process of getting legislation across the finish line can be.”
The amicable and favorable question by the friendly press was slammed on Twitter.
Newsbusters news analyst Nicholas Fondacaro said Stelter was “bootlicking.”
Conservative blogger Erik Soderstrom sounded off, “What a subservient, obsequious question for anyone in media to be earnestly asking the President’s mouthpiece. @brianstelter can’t wait to grovel before Democrats when he wakes up in the morning.”
Senior editor at The Federalist Mollie Hemingway tweeted, “Our corrupt media are absolutely nothing more than propagandists and should be treated as such.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s former grassroots director, Nicholas Sandmann, noted, “Media during Trump couldn’t say enough about how wrong everything he did was. Media under Biden can’t think of anything to even question in his administration.”
New York Post columnist Karol Markowicz referred to the time the press asked President Joe Biden about his milkshake, “Missed opportunity to get Jen’s favorite ice cream flavor.”
Conservative commentator Stephen L. Miller mocked Stelter by saying, “‘How can we do a better job of sucking up to you?'”
Also from the same fawning interview, Stelter attempted to bond with Psaki based on them both being parents of young children, asking her if she fears for their children when they grow up considering the “craziness we’re seeing from the GOP.” Independent journalist Glenn Greenwald lampooned Stelter’s “sycophantic” interview.
Stelter then claimed that “a lot of liberals don’t think Fox should be called on” during White House press conferences, and asked, “So why do you call on Fox News and Newsmax?”
Stelter also asked what Psaki learned from previously being a commentator for CNN, and how that helps her in her current job as White House press secretary.
Stelter may have hinted that Psaki shouldn’t be taking questions from Fox News since it is CNN’s competition, but recently Stelter has been taking a beating in the ratings. In the first week of May, Stelter’s “Reliable Sources” talk show suffered its lowest ratings of the year, averaging only 810,000 total viewers for the May 2 episode.
“Reliable Sources” is down 53% in viewership since January.