UPDATE WITH DETAILS OF MEETING: The campaign manager of Donald Trump’s winning Presidential run says that the off-the-record meeting today between the President-elect and top brass from ABC News, CBS News, NBC News, CNN and Fox News was “excellent.”
Calling the now over gathering “unprecedented,” Kellyanne Conway also said in the lobby of Trump Tower on Monday that the bigwig talk was “very candid and honest.” Noting that, even after a campaign where the media was often the focus of Trump’s disdain, there was “no need to mend fences,” Conway added that it was still “great to set the reset button” in Monday’s media sit-down. “Thanks for sharing your bosses with us today,” Conway told reporters with a laugh.
Though the New York Post and others reported later Monday that Trump’s meeting with media bosses and talent descended into a haranguing by the PEOTUS, sources say it was all a matter of perspective. “Yes, it got heated but that was not the overall tone of the session,” said one participant. “There were some organizational issues discussed, like access and issue of pool reporters for the transition,” another individual with knowledge of the meeting told Deadline.
Conway later in the day also disputed that the thrust of the meeting while appearing on Bloomberg’s With All Due Respect. That’s not true at all,” the Trump advisor said. “I sat right to his left. He did not explode in anger.”
Interestingly, even after talking with the media brass, Trump bypassed all the nets and cablers later in the day to drop a video online of his immediate agenda once in office next year. For a new born politician and proven master media manipulator, this latest move may be a good indication of the role social media will play for policy and outreach for President Trump.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 21, 2016
Executives from The New York Times are set to drop by tomorrow with other media chiefs in the upcoming days too.
PREVIOUSLY, 11 AM: Ari Emanuel dropped by for a chat yesterday, and today executives and on-air talent from ABC, CBS and NBC’s newsrooms and CNN and Fox News are meeting with Donald Trump. Having started about half an hour ago at Trump Tower, the sit-down comes after an election where the now President-elect went after the media with venom at rallies and online.
No word if humble pie was served to Trump’s guests, all of whom had his chances of winning the White House as low to zero before the November 8 election. However, sources do tell Deadline that past Breitbart News CEO and now chief Trump advisor Steven Bannon would be sitting in on at least a portion of the meeting today a would campaign manager Kellyanne Conway.
The off-the-record meeting includes CNN boss Jeff Zucker, Wolf Blitzer and Erin Burnett plus ABC News head James Goldston, and anchor David Muir plus, and host-of-all trades George Stephanopoulos, a top Bill Clinton aide back when Bubba was in the White House.
Also expected at the star chamber of sorts are Fox News co-presidents Bill Shine and Jack Abernethy, plus head of programming Suzanne Scott and head of news Jay Wallace plus Brian Jones from Fox Business Network. No word on what on-air talent is there from FNC. Also unclear is whether ex-FNC boss Roger Ailes will be there. Ailes left the network in the summer after sexual harassment claims surfaced and subsequently went on to advise the ex-Apprentice host’s campaign.
We do know that NBC News chief Deborah Turness, Nightly News anchor Lester Holt, Meet The Press‘ Chuck Todd and MSNBC president Phil Griffin are there. So too are CBS’ morning show hosts Charlie Rose, Gail King and Norah O’Donnell and Face The Nation frontman John Dickerson, who were seen entering the elevators at Trump Tower for the 10 AM PT kiss-the-ring shindig. CBS News VP and DC bureau chief Chris Isham was there too.