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CNN slights Mount Rushmore as 'slave owners' in 2020, but called it 'monument to 4 great presidents' in 2016

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CNN on Friday depicted Mount Rushmore as "slave owners" situated on stolen land, after praising the monument for its cultural significance back in 2016, during a segment with then-presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.

Grabien's Tom Elliot tweeted a clip of network correspondent Leyla Santiago saying Mount Rushmore sits on land that was stolen from Native Americans, just hours ahead of a speech by President Trump.

"President Trump will be at Mount Rushmore, where he’ll be standing in front of a monument of two slave owners and on land wrestled away from Native Americans," she said. "I'm told that, uh, he'll be focusing on the effort to 'tear down our country's history.'"

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This clashes, however, with a CNN segment from 2016 in which Sanders marveled at the structure, saying that it represents the best of what the United States has to offer.

"This is our country at it's very best," he said. "What an incredible achievement."

A CNN reporter's voice can then be heard talking about the "majesty of the moment," before calling Mount Rushmore a "monument to four great American presidents."

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Sanders added, "Just the accomplishment and the beauty — it really does make one very proud to be an American."

Trump is scheduled to speak at Mount Rushmore Friday night, where he is expected to address various protests throughout the United States that have resulted in riots and the tearing down of historical monuments.

Fox News reached out to CNN about the discrepancy but did not receive a reply to the request for comment.

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World News

CNN executive raises eyebrows with snarky response to Trump as former network staffer takes notice

Trump 2020 legal team defends suing CNN over opinion piece

An influential CNN executive has been overtly anti-Trump on social media, an unusual move for news a network honcho, but a CNN employee-turned-media critic took notice to the latest snarky tweet.

On Thursday evening, President Trump mocked Chris Cuomo’s ratings after “Cuomo Prime Time” failed to finish the second quarter of 2020 among the 15 most-watched programs on cable news among total viewers.

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CNN head of strategic communications Matt Dornic responded directly to the president on Twitter.

“CNN is not seeking a new head of programming. But there is a job opening up at the White House,” Dornic wrote.

This is hardly the first time that CNN executives have mocked the president in a public setting, which is historically rare for news network management. Dornic is outspoken on Twitter about his disdain for Trump’s anti-CNN tweets on a regular basis, as is the network’s verified communications department Twitter account – the very same department that Dornic oversees.

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CNN political analyst and editor-at-large Chris Cillizza liked the latest jab, captioning the tweet, “And this is why Dornic is the absolute best.”

But not everybody agrees with Cillizza.

Former CNN senior digital producer Steve Krakauer, who now edits the Fourth Watch media newsletter, pointed out that executives from other networks wouldn’t get away with such partisan opinion.

“I have to say, there’s something refreshing about a CNN executive feeling completely unrestrained in stating his personal political objective of electing Joe Biden. I do wonder what the media reaction would be if a Fox News exec did this in 2012 responding to President Obama,” Krakauer wrote.

When reached for comment, Dornic directed Fox News to a follow-up tweet he sent on Thursday when a user responded by telling him not to get “arrogant” about the upcoming election. “Learn from 2016,” the user wrote.

“Not a prediction. A fact. There is a job opening up, which is why we’re having an election,” Dornic responded.

The CNN exec declined additional comment.

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Dornic has also retweeted anti-Trump messages from Hillary Clinton, The Lincoln Project and George Conway over the past few days. Earlier this week, CNN’s verified public relations Twitter account talked down to the president in response to a different Trump tweet about cable news ratings.

“This is exhausting. But [White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany] says you can read and also consume intelligence verbally. So consider reading this or asking one of your staffers to read it aloud to you,” the @CNNPR handle wrote, linking to a press release about the network’s recent ratings.

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“Cuomo Prime Time” was actually CNN’s most-watched show during the second quarter of 2020, but only finished No. 17 overall among cable news programs – behind 13 Fox News shows and three MSNBC shows.

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The primetime CNN show finished behind a variety of daytime offerings on the other cable news stations such as “Outnumbered,” “The Daily Briefing with Dana Perino,” "Bill Hemmer Reports” and even MSNBC’s “Deadline: White House.”

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Business

WarnerMedia To Sell CNN Atlanta Headquarters As AT&T Seeks To Slash Debt

WarnerMedia plans to sell the historic CNN Center in Downtown Atlanta — the building attacked last month in a wave of protests — as parent AT&T looks to shed assets to help pare down its massive debt.

Plans to unload the property following the AT&T-Time Warner merger had been put on hold but resurfaced Monday in memo to CNN staffers. It’s a time of new ownerships and real estate shifts in the media world, with ViacomCBS also in the market to sell off the fabled CBS Black Rock building in New York City.

“We are consolidating our WarnerMedia Atlanta operations in our recently renovated and redesigned Techwood campus. This will increase collaboration and optimize use of Techwood, which was created to be a state-of-the-art hub for our diverse business portfolio. As part of these changes we are selling the CNN Center, which is a retail center, well positioned in the downtown entertainment area of the city. Once sold, we will lease back the property for a minimum of five years. There will be no immediate impact to employees working at the CNN Center,” WarnerMedia said in a statement.

“Now that we’ve had time to further evaluate, we’ve concluded that the best course of action is to sell the CNN Center,” the company said in a memo to employees. It will centralize most employees at its location in Techwood complex, also in Atlanta. It said the transition process would be “lengthy.”

It acknowledged the gravitas of such a sale, saying, “We recognize the historical relevance of the CNN Center. Ted Turner was a true pioneer who reinvented media when he launched the 24-hour news channel in 1980.”

“WarnerMedia was proud to play a part in solidifying Ted’s legacy last December with the dedication of our Techwood campus to him, the unveiling of a commissioned mural portrait on our campus and a donation to the University of Georgia, in partnership with the Turner Family and Turner Enterprises, that established the Ted Turner Exhibition Hall & Gallery at UGA’s library, the Ted Turner Scholarship Fund and the Ted Turner Maverick internship.”

The CNN Center was attacked by demonstrators who broke windows and threw firecrackers on May 29 in the midst of heated protests after the killing of George Floyd.

AT&T had planned to sell $10 billion in asset this year, a move that was in part stymied by the coronavirus pandemic. It has over $150 billion debt, inflated by the Time Warner acquisition. It sold Central European Media last year for $2.1 billion, as well as its stakes in Hulu, Hudson Yards offices and other real estate and cell towers. It was also reported to be looking to unload Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment video game division.

“A part of efficiently running a business is constantly examining the operations to make sure we’re making the best use of our assets, including real estate,” the memo said.

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World News

Media Brutally Calls Out John Bolton For Putting Money Over Patriotism

If John Bolton was expecting his book tour to go smoothly, he was sadly mistaken.

The former national security adviser is currently making the media rounds promoting “The Room Where It Happened,” his Donald Trump tell-all, and he’s getting burned by outlets all over the ideological spectrum. 

As the mashup video above shows, anchors from CNN and Fox News as well as the co-hosts of “The View” have been bombarding Bolton with some very tough questions.

The main takeaway: Why did you wait to release damning allegations against the president when you could have testified during the impeachment trial and it might have made a difference?

  • Fox News host Martha McCallum asked Bolton, “Isn’t it a shirking of duty to not step up in that moment, given how strongly you felt about what was going on?”

  • Her colleague, Brett Baier, pressed Bolton, “Don’t you feel some responsibility now that you’re saying [Trump] should have been impeached on other things, but you never piped up?”

  • Joy Behar of “The View” noted that Bolton worked for Trump for 17 months, but “never said a word until someone gave you $2 million to write a book about it.”

  • “View” co-host Sunny Hostin asked, “Help me understand why your silence is not complicity?”

  • CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer chided Bolton by saying, “You chose not to [testify to Congress under oath]. Instead, you wanted to wait until you could get your, quote, $2 million advance for your book.”

You can watch the media put Bolton through the wringer in the video above.

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