Well, CNN has a new political editor, and the staff is apparently “demoralized.” Maybe that’s because it’s Sarah Isgur, a former spokesperson for former Attorney General Jeff Sessions. You know we slam CNN a lot here. We do. They are anti-Trump, anti-GOP, they’re biased, but every now and then they do file a solid report. And apparently, every now and then, they hire a pretty solid Republican who will be helming their 2020 election coverage. That is what Isgur is tasked with doing in her new role. Still, she’s from the Trump orbit diving headlong into the enemy territory. Isgur has trashed her new employer, calling CNN the “Clinton News Network.” Side note, she’s not wrong. With someone who isn’t like them entering their halls, the staff is reportedly not too pleased (via Daily Beast):
One anecdote about Sarah Isgur: Top Trump aides were skeptical of hiring her after the 2016 election when she criticized Trump. So Jeff Sessions had to bring her into the Oval for an unusual meeting, where she promised the president she would be loyal. https://t.co/rFBrlUAcDF— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) February 20, 2019
CNN staffers are upset and confused about the network’s decision to hire a partisan political operative to oversee its 2020 campaign reporting.
On Tuesday, a CNN spokesperson confirmed to The Daily Beast that the network has hired Republican political advisor Sarah Isgur as the politics editor helming CNN’s 2020 coverage. The move was first reported by Politico.
Throughout her decade-long career in Republican politics, Isgur has served as an advisor to Ted Cruz and Mitt Romney, and was Carly Fiorina’s deputy campaign manager for the 2016 Republican primary. Until last year, Isgur was a top spokesperson for former Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ Department of Justice.
A CNN spokesperson said Isgur will not be involved in the network’s DOJ coverage, but will guide TV and digital coverage of the 2020 election, occasionally offering on-screen analysis.
The hiring was met with a negative internal reaction, especially because many CNN staffers have been largely left in the dark on the controversial decision. While other marquee hires are often announced internally, as of Tuesday afternoon the company has not circulated any guidance to staff about Isgur’s new role, leading employees to wonder how much of a role she will have in day-to-day political reporting.
“It’s extremely demoralizing for everyone here,” one network editorial staffer told The Daily Beast.
Indeed, it is not unusual for cable-news networks like CNN to hire political operatives as on-air commentators or opinion writers. But it is almost unheard of for a high-profile operative with zero journalistic experience to land a top editorial role at a major news organization. (Even though CBS News political director Caitlin Conant is a former prominent Republican staffer, she served as an executive in the network’s communications shop for several years before moving into an editorial role.)
As such, Isgur’s hiring was also met with criticism by media reporters and media-ethics experts. “There weren’t any journalists available?” NYU journalism professor Jay Rosen said to The Daily Beast. “This person is not a journalist,” wrote Parker Molloy, a reporter for left-leaning media watchdog Media Matters.
CNN’s new political editor, Sarah Isgur, once referred to her future employer as the “Clinton News Network,” and has used false claims and conspiracies to demean Democrats.— Vox (@voxdotcom) February 19, 2019
She’ll coordinate the network’s 2020 coverage on TV and online. https://t.co/e5aqudAv1P
Well, what is a journalist? I only ask because this piece had the stones to insinuate that the left-wing Media Matters are…experts of the news media and determining who is and who isn’t a so-called journalist. The Left, in keeping with their condescending characteristic, likes to think they own the term and own the industry. Okay—on the latter part, that’s probably true via sheer numbers. But the amount CNN and other outlets have tripped-up in covering this White House, especially on the Russia collusion beat, proves that the media is viciously anti-Trump, anti-Republican, and everyone is biased. I’m okay with that. It’s the Left that isn’t, unwilling to concede that they do indeed have a liberal bias in their coverage. Admit it, embrace it, and a lot of the sting that comes with attacking the media’s left-wing proclivities goes out the window, but they won’t. They like keeping this veneer that they’re like firefighters putting out fires, the descendants of Walter Cronkite, who did report the news as it was.
Cronkite was great but he’s long gone. It’s now the era of getting things dead wrong about koi fish feeding, China trips, and, of course, Russian collusion. Oh, and let’s not forget the initial salvos of fake news from the liberal news media with this administration. Remember the ‘Trump removed the bust of MLK from the Oval Office’ nonsense? I do. Journalists are biased. It’s time to admit this. It’s a time for picking sides.
Heck, you know what you’re getting when you come to Townhall. We lean to the Right. We’re open about our biases. You know what to expect. So, in keeping with that theme, I hope these CNN staffers endure more misery for a bit. But I also hope they act like adults, grow up, and deal with it after a couple days. They still have jobs to do. And no, CNN isn’t going to become a media wing of the RNC. Please, if you think that as a CNN staffer, you’re on heroin. There might be a different flare, angle, or delivery when Isgur enters her new role, but it will be a refreshing departure from the usual hysteria that’s featured on the network on a near-daily basis. So, congratulations to Ms. Isgur. Tear it up in there.