Presidents of the United States have enjoyed cordial relationships with the media over the past 200 years of our republic.
John F. Kennedy was pals with Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee. Ronald Reagan and Walter Cronkite were known to be quite friendly. There have been others, too.
Have any of them, though, sought actual policy advice from media pundits the way Donald J. Trump has reportedly done with Fox News Channel anchors and other on-air personalities?
There is a certain strangeness that crosses the line into frightening about the Trump-Fox relationship. It is unseemly, particularly given the “fake news” tag the president plasters on other news organizations, be they print or broadcast.
This peculiar alliance has prompted the Democratic National Committee to ban Fox from hosting any of the planned Democratic primary presidential debates coming up later this year. DNC chairman Tom Perez made it clear: Fox has become entirely too intertwined with the Trump administration to be considered a fair and impartial media organization. So the DNC won’t allow Fox to participate in the party’s series of debates.
When a Fox News talking head, Sean Hannity, takes the microphone at a Trump campaign-style rally, he crosses the line from an ostensible “journalist” to becoming a campaign flack.
There can be little doubt, therefore, about the correctness of the DNC decision to shut Fox News out of the party’s nominating process.