When asked by a White House reporter on Monday if he had a response to reports that all three major news networks — CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News — had banned a racist ad from his reelection campaign, President Trump shrugged and claimed that “a lot of things are offensive.”
“I don’t know about it, you’re telling me something I don’t know about,” Trump said in response to the question. “We have a lot of ads and they certainly are effective based on the numbers that we’re seeing.”
“A lot of things are offensive,” he said. “Your questions are offensive a lot of times. So, you know.”
The controversial ad, which CNN deemed “racist” and refused to run, links the migrant caravan heading toward the southern border with Luis Bracamontes, a man convicted of killing two police officers. The ad directly accuses Democrats of seeking to bring more people like Bracamontes into the U.S.
NEW: "We have a lot of ads," Pres. Trump says when asked about controversy over anti-immigration ad. "They certainly are effective, based on the numbers that we're seeing." "A lot of things are offensive," he says on criticism that ad is offensive. "Your questions are offensive." pic.twitter.com/ljTjjdnUz7
— World News Tonight (@ABCWorldNews) November 5, 2018
The ad’s claim that Democrats brought Bracamontes back into the country was given “four Pinocchios” by Washington Post fact-checker Glenn Kessler. A review of court records by the newspaper reveals his case was handled primarily by Republicans.
Marianne Gambelli, president of ad sales at Fox News, told The Hill that the network on Sunday decided to pull the ad, which has been widely criticized for stoking anti-immigrant anxieties using false or misleading messages.
“Upon further review, FOX News pulled the ad yesterday and it will not appear on either FOX News Channel or FOX Business Network,” Marianne Gambelli, president of ad sales at Fox News, said in a statement on Monday after deciding to pull the ad from the airwaves. The ad has appeared on Fox networks multiple times in the past week.
“After further review, we recognize the insensitive nature of the ad and have decided to cease airing it across our properties as soon as possible,” NBCUniversal said in a statement Monday morning after facing pushback for airing it during “Sunday Night Football.”
CNN over the weekend ripped the ad as “racist,” saying the network declined the opportunity to be paid to air the ad.
“CNN has made it abundantly clear in its editorial coverage that this ad is racist,” CNN communications tweeted. “When presented with an opportunity to be paid to take a version of this ad, we declined. Those are the facts.”
“This ad violates Facebook’s advertising policy against sensational content so we are rejecting it,” a Facebook announced in a statement. “While the video is allowed to be posted on Facebook, it cannot receive paid distribution.”