CNN anchor Jake Tapper appeared offended by the assertion made by former National Security Adviser Gen. H.R. McMaster that the anti-Trump network attracts a partisan audience.
On Sunday’s “State of the Union,” McMaster attempted to address why the country is so bitterly divided, insisting it didn’t all start with his former boss, President Trump.
“What we need to do is we need to analyze what the heck happened, right?” McMaster began. “We’ve been talking about the president’s responsibility, but it didn’t start there, right? This loss of confidence, these large portions of our population which feel disenfranchised, that lack confidence in our common identity as Americans, who lack confidence in our democratic principles and institutions and processes. How did that happen?”
McMaster then listed off “civics education” and “a sense of our history” among things that should be reexamined before turning to the media’s role in America’s divide.
“We have to look at your profession, Jake, the media,” McMaster told Tapper. “Why is it that people who lean in one direction politically watch one cable news station, some who lean in another direction watch yours or another one? Why do people go to the pseudo-media and believe these kinds of conspiracy theories? What is the role that social media plays in further polarizing our society and pinning us against each other. We have a lot to work to do, Jake.”
After McMaster called for a “bipartisan, nonpartisan” solution, Tapper appeared nauseated at the suggestion that CNN had any role in fueling divisions in the country.
“I don’t want to get into a conversation about CNN,” Tapper responded before getting into a conversation about CNN. “But I will say there are channels in which lies are told and there are channels in which facts are told and people who want the lies, they don’t come here. They go to a different channel. But I don’t want about-“
“Hey Jake, I’m just stating a fact,” McMaster doubled down. “There is no authoritative source of information these days, information news these days. I’m not talking about opinion and analysis, I’m talking about news that everybody goes to, right? So we have this basis for conversation. This is a fact that I think you can agree with, Jake, and we all have a role in addressing.”
“Absolutely,” Tapper responded before quickly changing the subject.