“Morning Joe” co-host Mika Brzezinski said the major broadcast networks should refuse to air President Trump’s primetime immigration address Tuesday night, saying it would be nothing short of a “stream of lies” that would further “debase” the office of U.S. president.
“Done right, a nighttime Oval Office address can unite the country in trying times. It can inspire the better angels in ourselves, but all the signs here indicate that is not what Donald Trump has in mind,” Brzezinski said. “Like they’ve done with other presidents in other times, the networks should refuse to turn over the airwaves to Donald Trump tonight for what they know objectively to be a steady stream of lies.
“Maybe that will stop him from debasing yet another one of our historic, solemn and cherished presidential traditions,” she added. “They shouldn’t run it.”
On Monday, President Trump revealed that he would deliver a primetime address from the Oval Office about immigration and the proposed border wall. The speech will be his first such remarks from the Oval Office to the country and comes as the nation remains mired in a three-week-long government shutdown over funding for the long promised wall.
Critics like Brzezinski have said Trump should be denied access to such powerful television real estate as he will use it to spread falsehoods into the homes of the American people. His regular attacks on the media have also not generally endeared executives to him either.
As of Tuesday morning, however, it appeared that all of the networks — including Brzezinski’s own MSNBC — had nevertheless decided to agree to Trump’s request for airtime. With stakes running high amid the shutdown, Democratic leaders have also demanded equal time for a response to refute the president’s claims tonight, immediately after his address.
A rep for MSNBC did not immediately respond to request for comment on the Brzezinski monologue.
In his newsletter Monday evening, CNN’s Brian Stelter quoted an anonymous television executive who put the conundrum bluntly to him in a text message.
“He calls us fake news all the time, but needs access to airwaves and cable pipes to deliver his false narrative,” he read.