After local media ripped Virginia Democrats for falsely comparing Ed Gillespie, the GOP nominee for governor, to white supremacists in the wake of Charlottesville earlier this year, Hillary Clinton’s ex-spokesman Brian Fallon has gone all in with the same comparison.
Earlier this week, the Democrats—who are pushing Ralph Northam—sent out a flier with President Donald Trump’s and Gillespie’s photo superimposed over torch-bearing white supremacists from Charlottesville earlier this year with the message: “On Tuesday, November 7th, Virginia Gets To Stand Up… To Hate.”
The Democrats were roundly criticized for it.
“That isn’t merely a reach. It’s practically libel,” the Richmond Times-Dispatch wrote in an editorial condemning the Democratic Party for the mailer.
“Gillespie has repeatedly and passionately condemned white supremacists and other creatures that have crawled out from under the alt-right rock,” the Times-Dispatch continued. “Linking him to them requires the following absurd logic: (1) Donald Trump said some stupid things about Charlottesville. (2) Trump is a Republican. (3) Gillespie is a Republican. (4) Therefore, Gillespie supports racial hate.”
In fact, the Democrats’ inaccurate smears are so bad that the Richmond Times-Dispatch just endorsed Gillespie–after not endorsing in the last gubernatorial race:
— Philip Wegmann (@PhilipWegmann) October 27, 2017
Apparently Fallon did not get the message that this was inaccurate. He sent this tweet out on Friday:
Live look at Ed Gillespie campaign strategy meeting: pic.twitter.com/izcs57hZUv
— Brian Fallon (@brianefallon) October 27, 2017
While it is clearly inaccurate, it also significantly complicates matters for his new employer: CNN. When Fallon worked for Clinton, he might not have been held to a standard of accuracy since their mission on the campaign was to win the election (they failed miserably, as Donald Trump crushed Hillary Clinton in the electoral college—she could not even win 20 states, and Trump won 30 and a half states for a whopping 306 electoral vote total).
CNN just this week sent out a new hilariously lame “Facts First” ad campaign attempting, about as ineffectively as anyone could, to combat the network’s reputation for being—as President Trump calls it—“very fake news.”
The ad shows an apple on screen, and a narrator says: “This is an apple. Some people might try to tell you that it’s a banana. They might scream banana, banana, banana over and over and over again. They might put BANANA in all caps. You might even start to believe that this is a banana. But it’s not. This is an apple.”
The network was roundly mocked for it, with outlets as far-ranging as the right-wing Daily Caller and the left-wing BuzzFeed putting out parodies of their own.
.@CNN is bananas.
— The Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) October 23, 2017
— BuzzFeed News (@BuzzFeedNews) October 24, 2017
So did One America News Network:
The NRA, though, mocked it even more effectively with a video of a lemon—obviously meant to poke fun at CNN anchor Don Lemon.
A narrator reads in the NRA’s video:
This is a lemon. Some people might try to tell you that it’s a journalist, that it’s not biased. That it retains journalistic integrity after baselessly accusing our president of inciting civil war. Yeah, some people might try to tell you that this is a journalist. They might even scream JOURNALIST JOURNALIST JOURNALIST over and over again. They might put JOURNALIST in all caps. But this is a lemon. Its network colluded with a Democratic presidential candidate. Its colleague gave debate questions to Hillary Clinton. Don’t be fooled. This is not a journalist. This is a lemon. A bitter lemon.
So, if CNN actually believed in “Facts First,” here is the network’s chance to do something about it: Fallon made a clearly inaccurate attack on a Republican. The network could step up and revoke his contract, like it did to conservative contributor Jeffrey Lord. But, as of Friday afternoon, nothing.
A Breitbart News inquiry to CNN spokeswoman Lauren Pratapas—who still, months later, refuses to be transparent about the “very fake news” scandal that saw three of CNN’s top reporters and editors resign—went unanswered, as per usual, as CNN refuses to actually stand for facts despite a cheesy ad campaign claiming it does.