People Are Furious With NBC Over Trump Town Hall

Network is being criticized, even by its own
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 15, 2020 2:00 AM CDT
Updated Oct 15, 2020 6:43 AM CDT
NBC's Decision on Trump Town Hall Called 'Indefensible'
In this combination of file photos, former Vice President Joe Biden, left, speaks in Wilmington, Del., on March 12, 2020, and President Donald Trump speaks at the White House in Washington on April 5, 2020.   (AP Photo/File)

NBC News' decision to host President Trump's town hall Thursday night—which will air on the network at the same time ABC News is airing Joe Biden's competing event—is not going over well in some circles. The Los Angeles Times reports #BoycottNBC is trending on Twitter, and even former NBC star Katie Couric weighed in: "Having dueling town halls is bad for democracy—voters should be able to watch both and I don’t think many will. This will be good for Trump because people like to watch his unpredictability. This is a bad decision." Fox News rounds up more criticism, with one political analyst calling NBC's decision "indefensible."

President Trump refused the virtual format that was offered for the debate originally scheduled for Thursday, so the whole thing was scrapped, and Biden decided to do his town hall instead. Trump's decision came next, and Couric is not the only former NBC person accusing the network of capitulating to the POTUS. "I am dismayed—more like disgusted—by NBC’s decision to air Trump’s ‘I won’t play by the rules so let me make my own rules’ town hall opposite Biden’s,'" a former executive VP posted on Facebook; a former producer also said it's a bad idea. And a reporter tweeted, "I've heard from over a dozen NBC, MSNBC, and CNBC sources (talent and staff) and the frustration with and anger toward their employer for scheduling a town hall against Biden is palpable." The network has not weighed in on the criticism. (Read more Election 2020 stories.)

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