In his first Sunday show interview, new White House press secretary Josh Earnest told CNN’s Reliable Sources host Brian Stelter that CNN is the network he turns to for news (after ESPN):
Stelter: How about television? When you turn on the TV which network do you turn to first?
Earnest: …If it’s for work, I definitely spend some time on CNN. I’ve found them to be a pretty good barometer of what a lot of people in this room are going to be interested on a daily basis.
Stelter: You must turn on Fox and MSNBC as well?
Earnest: Of course. It’s useful to have some insight into what the other cables are doing.
Stelter: Do the broadcast networks still matter?
Earnest: Absolutely they do. In a different way than they used to. But there’s still a tremendous audience, and they’re very serious people who work for those organizations.
No wonder the Obama administration is struggling so much to articulate any kind of effective message. According to Earnest, they are turning to a third-place cable news network that covered the missing Malaysian Air flight MH370 long after there was any new news, and which lacks any kind of identity, when compared to Fox and MSNBC.
If I were MSNBC president Phil Griffin, I’d be very disappointed that the White House isn’t paying more attention to their unofficial media arm for news.