Actor-director turned political activist Rob Reiner lamented on ABC’s The View Friday that right-leaning mainstream media outlets—such as Breitbart News—refuse to overstate Russia’s minute impact on the 2016 presidential election.
A partial transcript follows:
JOY BEHAR: “During the ‘Hot Topics’—I don’t know if you were watching—we showed a cover of Time Magazine in where Trump reflects on himself as a king. A lot of people feel that’s an accurate description of where he’s at. What do you think about it?
ROB REINER: “I think that’s where he wants to be. I think he has king-envy or oligarch envy. He looks at people like Putin and I think he’d like to be that. Putin basically has a cut of everything that comes into that government. He has a deal—everybody has to play with him and I think that’s what Trump would like. Any business done with the United States, he would get his cut.”
BEHAR: “Are you frightened for the country like I am?”
REINER: “Yes! I am, I am.”
BEHAR: “Why? Tell us.”
REINER: “I am because this is the first time—forget whether or not you like Trump, you don’t like Trump—this is the first time that we’ve had a foreign entity come in and actually affect an election and play on our playing field. That’s never happened before and we don’t have a president who’s willing to acknowledge that and make us safe. Cyberwarfare is very scary if you understand the capacity of it. It’s more than just messing with social media and getting information. It can be weaponized—
I’m scared we are not prepared for that.”
BEHAR: “I don’t think a lot of people in this country don’t care about it. They don’t care.”
REINER: “Well, they don’t care because they don’t really understand it. It’s very, very complicated and if you’re only getting your information from one place, it’s very difficult to penetrate. This is also the first time in American history where we’ve had a president—and every president uses propaganda to sell a policy, Republicans and Democrats—to sell a policy or a rationale for going to war. But this is the first time we have a president supported by mainstream media. I mean Fox is mainstream media. Between that and Breitbart and Sinclair and Alex Jones—40 percent of the country is getting their news there.”