On Wednesday, Jeff Zucker, President of CNN, alleged that President Donald Trump is “trying to bully us, and we’re not going to let him intimidate us.”
He claimed that he thinks President Trump has been targeting CNN and criticizing it because the network has viewers that are more susceptible to changing their views than other networks.
In an interview with the New York Times published Wednesday, Zucker said, “My job is to remind everyone that they need to stay focused doing their job. He’s trying to bully us, and we’re not going to let him intimidate us. You can’t lose your confidence and let that change the way you conduct yourselves.”
To a question about why Zucker thinks President Trump is targeting his network, Zucker claimed that Trump prefers television as a medium to reach the masses.
“Television is his preferred medium,” Zucker said. “And he knows our viewers can be swayed because they’re not watching Fox or MSNBC” — networks with an ideological bent in prime time.”
The Times’ interview of the CNN boss comes at a time when Trump’s battle with the network appears to be escalating.
Earlier on Sunday, Trump took to twitter to post a redditor’s video that showed Trump put a wrestler to ground before beating him up. The wrestler’s face was superimposed with the CNN logo.
The video received attention immediately, online. It was retweeted almost 330,000 times, but also received immense criticism from CNN and other members of the media.
However, the news network was also criticized for trying to blackmail the redditor who created the video. According to some, CNN “threatened” the creator with exposing his identity.
“He is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology, showed his remorse by saying he has taken down all his offending posts and because he said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again,” the story, titled “How CNN found the Reddit user behind the Trump wrestling GIF,” reads on CNN.com
Following news of CNN’s threats to the redditor, #CNNBlackmail began trending on social media and public figures including Donald Trump Jr., WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, and Vox’s German Lopez.