The Huffington Post defended its controversial decision to cover Donald Trump’s presidential campaign in its entertainment section, claiming the site won’t participate in the legitimacy of a “sideshow.”
In a “Morning Joe” segment, Mika Brzezinski and other panelists argued that regardless of the website’s opinion of Trump’s seriousness, he is leading in the polls and it’s not up to media organizations to decide whether a political candidate is serious enough to be covered.
“Bernie Sanders may or may not be in first place in New Hampshire but Mika has to go to CSPAN to watch coverage of him,” Huffington Post editorial director Danny Shea shot back. “Because of Donald Trump’s celebrity, he’s getting this perpetuating nonstop, wall-to-wall coverage that’s no different, honestly, than when CNN went wall-to-wall on Malaysia.”
Shea compared Huffington Post’s decision to Brzezinski’s infamous moment where she ripped up a script of Paris Hilton news and attempted to set it on fire.
“You were the heroin of a media moment,” he told Brzezinski. “You said, ‘Enough already,’ and we’re saying the exact same thing.”
Brzezinski countered Trump isn’t Paris Hilton walking out of jail following a DUI charge: “He is the Republican frontrunner.”
“It’s our job to decide how we cover the candidates — we’re not passive observers in the Trump show, we have a roll to play” Shea continued. “We have a role to play and nobody can deny that his poll numbers are fueled by nonstop media coverage which you wouldn’t give him if he weren’t a celebrity.”