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Trump Slams 'Spineless Surrender' of ESPN

He starts petition to have anthem televised
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 23, 2018 2:00 AM CDT
President Trump reacts after speaking during a rally Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018, in Charleston, W.Va.   (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
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(Newser) – With legal troubles swirling, President Trump—and his fundraising committee—have found a fresh target: ESPN. Trump has started a petition calling for the network to televise the national anthem before Monday Night Football this season, USA Today reports. "Just after we heard a sitting governor trash America, ESPN has now decided it will no longer play the National Anthem before Monday Night Football," Trump says in an email sent out by the Make America Great Again committee, referring to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's controversial recent remarks. "If 'America' is too offensive for anyone in our country, then what are they doing in America?" the Trump email says.

In the email, Trump called on supporters to join him in denouncing the "SPINELESS surrender to the politically correct liberal mob." The Washington Post notes that networks including CBS have not traditionally broadcast pregame national anthem performances, though exceptions were made during player protests last year. "We generally have not broadcast the anthem, and I don’t think that will change this year," ESPN president Jimmy Pitaro said last week. "Our plan going into this year is to not broadcast the anthem," he said, though he added that the policy could change. The network declined to comment on Trump's latest remarks. (Read more ESPN stories.)

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