In Defying the Odds, we discuss Trump's dishonesty and his record of disregarding the rule of law. Our next book, Divided We Stand, looks at the 2020 election and the January 6 insurrection.
Rachel Abrams at NYT:
Months after the inauguration of President Biden, One America News Network, a right-wing cable news channel available in some 35 million households, has continued to broadcast segments questioning the validity of the 2020 presidential election.
“There’s still serious doubts about who’s actually president,” the OAN correspondent Pearson Sharp said in a March 28 report.
That segment was one in a spate of similar reports from a channel that has become a kind of Trump TV for the post-Trump age, an outlet whose reporting has aligned with the former president’s grievances at a time when he is barred from major social media platforms.
Some of OAN’s coverage has not had the full support of the staff. In interviews with 18 current and former OAN newsroom employees, 16 said the channel had broadcast reports that they considered misleading, inaccurate or untrue.
To go by much of OAN’s reporting, it is almost as if a transfer of power had never taken place. The channel did not broadcast live coverage of Mr. Biden’s swearing-in ceremony and Inaugural Address. Into April, news articles on the OAN website consistently referred to Donald J. Trump as “President Trump” and to President Biden as just “Joe Biden” or “Biden.” That practice is not followed by other news organizations, including the OAN competitor Newsmax, a conservative cable channel and news site.
OAN has also promoted the debunked theory that the rioters who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6 were left-wing agitators. Toward the end of a March 4 news segment that described the attack as the work of “antifa” and “anti-Trump extremists” — and referred to the president as “Beijing Biden” — Mr. Sharp said, “History will show it was the Democrats, and not the Republicans, who called for this violence.” Investigations have found no evidence that people who identify with antifa, a loose collective of antifascist activists, were involved in the Capitol riot.
...Marty Golingan, who joined the channel as a producer in 2016, said OAN had changed in recent years. At the start of his employment, he said, it concentrated more on neutral coverage based on reports from The Associated Press or Reuters. He saw it as a scrappy upstart where he could produce cheeky feature stories, he said.
During the Trump presidency, it moved right, Mr. Golingan said. And when he was watching coverage of the pro-Trump mob breaking into the Capitol, he said, he worried that his work might have helped inspire the attack.
He added that he and others at OAN disagreed with much of the channel’s coverage. “The majority of people did not believe the voter fraud claims being run on the air,” Mr. Golingan said in an interview, referring to his colleagues.
He recalled seeing a photo of someone in the Capitol mob holding a flag emblazoned with the OAN logo. “I was like, OK, that’s not good,” Mr. Golingan said. “That’s what happens when people listen to us.” (Mr. Golingan said he was fired on Monday, the day after this article was published online.)