Donald Trump pushed for reporters to be fired for an incorrect news story, but at the same time implored Alabama voters to hire Roy Moore as their next senator, despite credible pedophilia allegations.
Donald Trump desperately wants Alabama voters to hire accused pedophile Roy Moore to be their next senator, a message he explicitly sent on stage in Florida and on his Twitter account.
But at the same time that Trump has expressed sympathy for a man accused of molesting children, he is pushing for reporters to be fired for making mistakes.
The divergent approaches show where Trump's priorities are and his overall mindset with regard to accountability and judgment, and the results are not good.
At his ego-stroking rally in Pensacola, Florida, Trump told attendees to "get out and vote for Roy Moore."
He followed that up with a tweet on Saturday morning, writing, "We can’t have a Pelosi/Schumer Liberal Democrat, Jones, in that important Alabama Senate seat."
The "Jones" reference is to the Democratic candidate Doug Jones, a former prosecutor who successfully pursued the Ku Klux Klan on murder charges.
While Trump clearly wants Alabama voters to hire Moore for the open senate seat, despite credible allegations of pedophilia and other sexual misconduct to minors, he simultaneously railed against the media for making mistakes in judgement.
Trump complained that an incorrect CNN story was "a vicious and purposeful mistake" and asked, "Watch to see if @CNN fires those responsible, or was it just gross incompetence?" In a subsequent tweet he digitally shouted, "Their slogan should be CNN, THE LEAST TRUSTED NAME IN NEWS!"
CNN has recently retracted a report that Donald Trump Jr. received advance notice from WikiLeaks about their planned release of emails stolen from the Democratic Party.
Certainly, the error from CNN was unfortunate, and they should have done a better job in preparing their report. But the network owned up the error and issued a correction.
The mistake also does not change the underlying fact that there was an avenue of communication between the Trump campaign, WikiLeaks, and the Russia-backed hackers who stole the emails in the first place.
Trump's standards are farcical. He is pounding the table, and demanding that reporters be fired for a mistake — the same type of people who did the work in revealing Moore's behavior. Trump continually seeks to undermine legitimate journalism, decrying anything that disagrees with him or makes him look bad as "fake news."
But he is also telling voters that while they should question the media's trustworthiness, they should put their trust in Moore. Moore is bigoted against Muslims, has complete disregard for the separation of church and state, and has a pattern of inappropriate and possibly criminal behavior with children.
Trump is a terrible judge of character, and for him to appoint himself as the arbiter of how mistakes should be made and which ones matter more than others is a joke.
It is an even bigger joke that he's making this judgment call while stumping for Roy Moore.