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MSNBC pundit bulldozes Sinclair defender with lesson on free press: ‘Our role is to be a check and balance’

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MSNBC contributor Jonathan Capehart on Monday schooled libertarian writer Matt Welch about why it is dangerous for a group like right-leaning Sinclair broadcasting to launch an attack on the American media.

MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle noted during a panel segment that Sinclair had recently come under fire for requiring local news anchors across the country to air news reports that are biased and often false. In one recent case, anchors were forced to accuse other news outlets of spreading “false news.”

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Welch, who is editor at large for the Koch brothers-backed Reason magazine, argued that the reaction to Sinclair was “overblown.”

“What is dangerous here about those scripts?” he opined. “I think that’s a little overheated. It’s a promo video… People in the news business are given to over-promoting their importance in the democracy.”

Capehart took a deep breath before responding.

“Let’s keep something in mind,” he suggested. “Journalism, reporters, what we do here at MSNBC, what we do at the Washington Post is the only profession that is protected in the Constitution of the United States. Journalists don’t have some ‘overblown’ view of their role in our democracy… Our role is to be a check and balance on power.”

“When The Washington Post says democracy dies in darkness, we’re not being hyperbolic,” the MSNBC contributor continued. “We’re talking about this [Sinclair] story, because if that deal goes through, more than 70 percent of the country is going to be — families are going to be watching ‘news’ from Sinclair Broadcasting.”

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Ruhle reminded Welch that most Americans are not aware that Sinclair stations are promoting biased news.

“When my mom and dad tune in to their local news, they’re not thinking there is any sort of agenda,” the MSNBC host explained.

Welch dismissed that point by saying that other sources of news were available on the Internet.

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“What happens when you only have one source?” Capehart wondered. “And that one source is perpetuating falsehoods and lies?”

“Go out and find somebody that gets only one sources [of news],” Welch said. “It doesn’t exist anymore.”

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“That’s just not true,” Capehart replied.

“There are lots of people who don’t use the Internet,” Ruhle observed. “My mom and dad don’t use it.”

“I would like to see this fact checked,” Welch complained.

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Watch the video below from MSNBC.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
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Large fires in Philadelphia — as police scramble to save City Hall

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Protests in the City of Brotherly Love resulted in multiple police cares being lit on fire as windows were broken in the town's iconic City Hall.

Anti-police violence protests have erupted across America following the killing of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis.

Here are some of the scenes from the Philadelphia protests:

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Trump Tower is ‘under siege’ as Chicago Police make arrests to defend the president’s building

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Protesters marched on Trump Tower in Chicago on Saturday, as Chicago police in riot gear and on horses defend the president's building.

State police were deployed to the scene to back up local police, who are reportedly arresting protesters.

On video showed protesters taking a knee in solidarity with Colin Kaepernick.

Actor John Cusack was among those documenting the protest.

Here are some of the images from the scene:

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George Floyd’s brother tears up discussing condolence phone call from Trump: ‘It hurt me’

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The brother of George Floyd described the condolence phone call he received from President Donald Trump during a Saturday interview on MSNBC.

Philonise Floyd was interviewed by the Rev. Al Sharpton on "Politics Nation."

While Derek Chauvin has been arrested and charged with third degree murder, the other three officers involved in the killing remain free.

"They all need to be convicted of first degree murder and given the death penalty," Floyd said.

"What was the conversation with President Trump like?" Sharpton asked.

"It was so fast," Floyd replied.

"He didn't give me an opportunity to even speak. It was hard, I was trying to talk to him, but he just kept like pushing me off, like 'I don't want to hear what you're talking about.' And I just told him I want justice. I said that I couldn't believe they committed a modern-day lynching in broad daylight."

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