When President Donald Trump ordered Mick Mulvaney from the room where he was taping an interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, was he behaving like a rude, overly brusque boss or was he just making TV?
Who knows what ABC’s motive was to release the clip of the president ordering his chief of staff from the room as he started coughing during the interview, which aired June 16. But pundits and critics immediately jumped to denounce the president for his rude behavior.
But it wasn’t rude behavior, and the news network and the critics and commentators know it. It was exactly how television is made.
What we see on TV isn’t necessarily what happens. That’s not to say that what they show is false, it’s just that it’s been polished a bit.
And everybody knows it. Or at least they should.
Do you think it just happened that Mr. Stephanopoulos was leaning on the desk to talk with the president? Or do you think it was a part of a discussion?
“George, trying leaning on the desk,” a producer likely said. “Let’s get a low angle shot of George and a high angle of the president.”
You can see in the uncut video released by the network that as soon as Mr. Mulvaney left the room, they started talking about camera angles. Mr. Trump repeated his answer — minus the cough.
It was simply take two.
Every time media pundits take an incident like this and deliberately or inadvertently makes it appear like something it isn’t, it feeds into the “fake news” narrative.
Was the president gruff? Maybe. Who hasn’t been talked to by a boss like that?
Was this interaction some indicator of Mr. Trump’s nature that was previously hidden? Please! The president’s behavior is on display nearly every day. This was a group of people making TV — nothing more, nothing less.