CNN has refused to air an advertisement by President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign that highlights former Vice President Joe Biden’s heavily scrutinized dealings with Ukraine, according to the Daily Beast.
The ad hits Biden, a 2020 Democrat candidate, for previously threatening to withhold $1 billion in aid unless Ukraine fired a prosecutor allegedly investigating a gas firm of which Biden’s son Hunter was a board member. The 30-second clip, titled “Biden Corruption,” is running on several national cable networks and online. To run the ad, the president’s 2020 campaign spent $8 million, while the Republican National Committee (RNC) chipped in $2 million.
“Joe Biden promised Ukraine $1 billion if they fired the prosecutor investigating his son’s company,” the ad’s narrator states. “But when President Trump asks Ukraine to investigate corruption, the Democrats want to impeach him.”
“And their media lapdogs fall in line,” the ad continues, featuring clips of CNN figures such as Chris “Fredo” Cuomo, Jim Acosta, and MSNBC host Rachel Maddow.
In a statement to the Daily Beast, CNN claimed it rejected the ad because “it does not meet our advertising standards.”
“Specifically, in addition to disparaging CNN and its journalists, the ad makes assertions that have been proven demonstrably false by various news outlets, including CNN,” the statement added.
Tim Murtaugh, Trump 2020 campaign’s communications director, responded to the move by accusing CNN of “spend[ing] all day protecting Joe Biden in their programming.”
“[I]t’s not surprising that they’re shielding him from truthful advertising too, and then talking to other media outlets about it,” he told the Daily Beast of the former vice president. “Our ad is entirely accurate and was reviewed by counsel, and CNN wouldn’t even describe to us what they found objectionable. This isn’t a cable news channel anymore, it’s a Democrat public relations firm.”
In May 2017, CNN declined to air a Trump campaign ad due to a graphic branding the corporate media as “fake news.”
“It is absolutely shameful to see the media blocking the positive message that President Trump is trying to share with the country. It’s clear that CNN is trying to silence our voice and censor our free speech because it doesn’t fit their narrative,” Michael Glassner, then-executive director of the campaign committee, said at the time.