ST. PETERSBURG, Florida — Donald Trump makes no secret of his distrust of the media.
“Look at all that press,” Trump said during a recent campaign appearance. “They’re among the most dishonest people in the world.”
Now news of a contributor for CNN passing along a debate question to the Hillary Clinton campaign is causing even more questions about credibility and giving journalists everywhere a black eye.
“It’s almost like giving her an advantage,” said John in Pinellas Park.
“It’s wrong because I feel they’re trying to make her look better to benefit them or to benefit the agenda they may have,” said Allison.
Al Tompkins of the Poynter Institute for Media Studies says the revelation is not good news for journalists.
“Nobody in journalism profits from someone like CNN being called to task for this because it makes all the debates fall under the same shadow,” said Tompkins. “‘Oh … I bet they were just slipping answers.’”
Tomkins says news networks should be cautious about how they present contributors with close political ties.
“No wonder the viewers are confused as to what we are and who we are. Are you in the role of the nonpartisan now? Are you in the role of the party spokesperson now?”
Despite all the criticism, Tompkins points out it was journalists who first called into question Clinton’s emails and have been digging for answers from both candidates since the beginning.
“It’s probably not our finest hour in the public’s eye, and I get that,” said Tompkins. “But I have to say I think there’s been some pretty darn good reporting.”