Former ABC News anchor Ted Koppel said on Wednesday that his Fox News counterpart Bill O’Reilly has undermined journalists’ ability to interview Donald Trump.
“I’ve interviewed him a number of times,” O’Reilly said of the Republican front-runner. “Not an easy interview. How would you do it?”
“You and I have talked about this general subject many times over the years. It’s irrelevant how I would do it,” Koppel replied. “You know who made it irrelevant? You did. You have changed the television landscape over the past 20 years — you took it from being objective and dull to subjective and entertaining. And in this current climate, it doesn’t matter what the interviewer asks him; Mr. Trump is gonna say whatever he wants to say, as outrageous as it may be.”
The real estate mogul’s audience, Koppel added, was not even a television audience, but one better suited for Twitter.
“They deal in messages of 140 characters or less, which keeps it nice and simple,” he explained.
O’Reilly did not respond to Koppel’s critique, and instead repeated the question.
“The first way you do it is not in the interview — you do it by some reporting,” Koppel said. “It’s an old-fashioned concept but I think demontrating who and what Mr. Trump is and what his policies really amount to is something you don’t do in an interview. He doesn’t answer the questions.”
Instead, Koppel explained, Trump ignores any number of “pointed” questions regarding his policies.
“When was the last time you have heard Donald Trump spell out a real policy on anything other than, ‘We’re gonna be the best, we’re gonna be the greatest, I’m gonna negotiate the best deals you’ve ever seen.’ There is no substance in any of that, and nobody among his followers seems to care about that.”
Watch the interview, as posted by Media Matters, below.