House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R-CA) appears to be using the Donald Trump press playbook to control the narrative on his controversial memo alleging abuses at the Department of Justice and FBI.
As CNN’s Brian Stelter wrote on Tuesday, Nunes’ decision to speak only to right-wing media outlets — primarily Fox News, but also conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh — show that he’s “speaking to Trump’s base.”
Since Trump moved to declassify the intelligence committee’s memo last Friday, Nunes has spoken to Fox News on three occasions, including twice yesterday. Nunes also granted Fox and the Washington Examiner, a conservative outlet friendly to Trump, prior access to the memo before it was released to the general public.
“The congressman’s media strategy seems to be focused on the conservative echo chamber, rather than the public at large,” Stelter wrote. “This suggests his goal is affirmation — reinforcing preexisting beliefs on the right — rather than persuasion.”
Beyond just who Nunes has chosen to speak to, his talking points in some of his memo media tour interviews echo Trump as well.
“Almost every story is fake news,” the chairman told Limbaugh on Monday, speaking about coverage fact-checking and debunking some of the claims in his memo. “Almost every story that runs about me is fake.”