President Donald Trump, having bailed on a debate with his Democratic challenger Joe Biden, had a town hall moderated by NBC News anchor Savannah Guthrie on Thursday night instead at the same exact time Biden was holding a town hall of his own on ABC News.
Though NBC had come under fire for providing Trump his desired platform (and time slot) after he torpedoed plans to face Biden head-on, Guthrie grilled the President on his tax returns, COVID-19 diagnosis, and refusal to condemn white supremacy, thus proving that Trump wasn’t going to escape the tough questions he might’ve faced during a debate–much to the fury of his conservative buddies.
“NBC fake news did their best to just ambush President Trump at tonight’s town hall,” Fox News host Sean Hannity declared on his program. “He pretty much debated Savannah Guthrie. And what we all witnessed was not journalism, it was a political debate with the morning host of the “Today Show” serving as, well, Joe Biden’s surrogate.”
Fox News host Laura Ingraham complained that “almost every question” Guthrie asked “was combative or in some way adversarial.”
“Savannah Guthrie acted as if she were Trump’s debate partner, not the moderator, not an interviewer,” Ingraham said. “And she clearly had to prove her liberal bonafides tonight.”
Other conservatives had similar complaints:
Our media is corrupt.
ABC treated Joe Biden with kid gloves and refused to even ask about the New York Post reporting.
NBC grilled @realDonaldTrump and acted as though they were debating him.
The silver lining is the American people can easily see who can handle the heat!
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) October 16, 2020
I just switched to NBC since ABC is in a commercial. Savanah Guthrie has interrupted Trump in these 60 seconds more than Stephanopulos has done to Biden in 40 mins. NBC is an interrogation. ABC is a picnic.
— Ari Fleischer (@AriFleischer) October 16, 2020
Even Joe Biden didn’t interrupt @realDonaldTrump this many times in the first debate.
— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) October 16, 2020
This was billed as a town hall, not a debate with Savannah Guthrie. I truly don't care about Savannah Guthrie's personal views and could stand to hear about 100% less of them.
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) October 16, 2020
Savannah Guthrie makes a good case for Joe Rogan as a moderator . Her hostility and aggressiveness is a case study in media hostility to conservatives. Trump did an amazing job calmly taking her on.
— Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) October 16, 2020
20 minutes of tonight’s town hall were wasted by Guthrie debating President @realDonaldTrump.
— Students For Trump (@TrumpStudents) October 16, 2020
So far, this is not a town hall for voters, it is designed to appease the angry NBC employees/Dems who are pissed off Trump’s on NBC at all.
— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) October 16, 2020