Donald Trump’s popularity soared after his Town Hall interview with CNN’s Kaitlin Collins. The left-leaning network even admitted that Trump’s lack of fear of the media and willingness to speak plainly is why he is so attractive to millions of voters. Joanne Rouston, a former Democrat, told CNN, “I like Trump and what he stood for and now, I like him more. It’s the fight,” she said.
The former President boasted about the CNN interview on his Truth social account and said the network was “desperate to get those Trump ratings back.”
Post-interview analysis contends that CNN gave Trump a platform to appeal to a Republican-filled audience and allowed him to galvanize his base without opposition.
Host Kaitlin Collins asked Donald Trump about January 6th and why he did not call off the crowd of protestors. He insisted that he did, but the relevant Twitter posts were removed. Collins also offered the former President the chance to refute a jury’s findings in a New York civil trial, which found him liable for the abuse and defamation of writer E. Jean Carroll. Trump said he doesn’t know Carroll and prompted laughter from the New Hampshire crowd when he referred to her as a “whack job.”
Anger at CNN’s decision to platform President Trump largely centers around his mockery of Carroll. Jane Manning, the Women’s Equal Justice Project director, said CNN had allowed Trump to re-victimize the writer.
High-profile anchor Anderson Cooper said he would understand if people chose never to watch the network again, while Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said the interview was “shameful” and “irresponsible.”
CNN’s CEO, Chris Licht, defended the decision to host Trump and said it was the duty of journalists to hold the powerful to account. He also praised Kaitlin Collins and said she had “made a lot of news.”
However, Collins has attracted considerable criticism, with some accusing her of letting Trump off lightly. House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries said the former President was allowed to lie about abortion without challenge from Ms. Collins.