Posted by on October 15, 2020 8:21 pm
Categories: 2020 Election

Trump bashes NBC ahead of his prime-time town hall

The president used an afternoon rally to go after the network’s personalities and claim he was being “set up.”

President Donald Trump sought to tamp down expectations ahead of his town hall with NBC on Thursday night, accusing the news network of setting him up.

“So, you know I’m being set up tonight,” he claimed to supporters at a rally in North Carolina, before deriding the network and its personalities — including the moderator of his upcoming town hall.

“It’s NBC, the worst. Home of sleepy eyes Chuck Todd and some others,” Trump said, referring to the “Meet the Press” host.

“They gave Lester Holt — he’s a beauty — they gave Joe Biden a week ago a town hall,” Trump said, asserting that “any child” could have answered the kinds of questions Biden fielded from the “Nightly News” anchor, including his 14-year-old son.

“Barron Trump would do great on that show. Because he’s a young child. They asked him questions that a child could answer, any child. A smart child, not such a smart child,” the president said to laughter, calling last week’s town hall a “joke.”

A spokesperson for NBC declined to comment on Trump’s attacks.

Trump then appeared to shrug off his qualms with the network, telling rallygoers that if nothing else, his campaign would get an hour of free exposure across all of NBC’s platforms.

“They asked me if I’d do it, I figured, ‘What the hell? We get a free hour of television,’” he said. Trump then pivoted to Savannah Guthrie, the “TODAY” co-anchor moderating Thursday’s event.

“She’s always lovely, isn’t she?” Trump mused dryly. “But I figured, why not? What’s the difference in tone between what they did to this guy who can’t put sentences together and what they do with me?”

Trump’s attack comes amid backlash inside the network for offering the town hall to begin with, given that the second presidential debate was planned for Thursday. The debate was thrown into limbo earlier this month with Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis, and the president refused to participate when it was changed to a virtual format.



President Donald Trump will participate in a town hall Thursday hosted by NBC News in Miami, in place of another debate between him and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

The event will be moderated by Today co-host Savannah Guthrie, who will direct a conversation between Trump and Florida voters. It will take place outdoors at the Pérez Art Museum.

Those interested in watching the town hall can tune into NBC at 8 p.m. ET. It will also be available on MSNBC, CNBC, NBC News Now and Telemundo’s online platforms. A livestream can also be accessed on NBC’s YouTube channel.

NBC officially announced the event on Wednesday, days after the Commission on Presidential Debates (CPD) cancelled what was meant to be the second presidential debate between Trump and Biden.

“On October 8, CPD announced that for the health and safety of all involved, the second presidential debate, scheduled for October 15 in Miami, would be conducted virtually,” the commission said in a statement. “The campaigns of the two candidates who qualified for participation in the debate made a series of statements concerning their respective positions regarding their willingness to participate in a virtual debate on October 15, and each now has announced alternate plans for that date.”
The CPD first announced that the October 15 debate would take place virtually after Trump, his wife Melania, and multiple other people in the president’s orbit had tested positive for COVID-19.