C-SPAN host Steve Scully, who has been named as the moderator of the second debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Joe Biden, raised eyebrows Thursday night when he publicly asked avowed anti-Trumper Anthony Scaramucci about whether he should “respond” to the president.
It is unclear at the time of this writing what Scully was referring to, but his outreach to Scaramucci added to prior allegations of pro-Biden bias against the selected moderator.
What are the details?
At 9:45 p.m. EST, Scully tweeted, “@Scaramucci should I respond to trump.” Scaramucci — who famously served a two-week stint as Trump’s White House press secretary before being fired and becoming a vehement critic of the president — wrote back, “Ignore. He is having a hard enough time. Some more bad stuff about to go down.”
Folks reacting on Twitter widely speculated that Scully accidentally sent the tweet publicly when he likely intended the message to Scaramucci to be private.
Regardless of the reason, the outreach added fuel to the fire that Scully would favor Biden in the debate because he interned for the former senator years ago.
The Washington Times reported that Scully — who is set to moderate the Oct. 15 debate — interned for Biden in 1978 “according to a biography published by George Washington University.”
The response from The Hill’s Joe Concha represented the reaction from many critics. He tweeted, “What? Why is the next presidential debate moderator publicly asking one of Trump’s staunchest critics in Anthony Scaramucci if he should respond to the president? In a related story, Scully once interned for Sen. Joe Biden. Optics here are horrible & underscore mistrust is media.”
President Trump brought up Scully to Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Thursday night, saying, “So, now I find out the guy from C-SPAN is a never-Trumper but I don’t mind that! Look at the people I’ve had in the past.”
The second debate is currently up in the air after the Commission on Presidential Debates announced Thursday that it would be virtual following Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis, but the president said he would not participate unless the event took place in person.