San Diego

POTUS 45: Self-Made Magnet for Nonstop Media Coverage

On this week's Politically Speaking on NBC 7, Gene Cubbison takes a look at President Donald Trump's relationship with the media

Whether he’s pushing domestic issues, foreign policy or ‘hot buttons’, the new resident of the White House has become a daily newsmaking machine.

Sometimes, hourly.

Coming from reality TV and a "Look at Me!" career in business, President Donald Trump's need to create nonstop news is being met with coverage that no President has really gotten since Richard Nixon, during the Watergate era. 

Even when the president’s surrogates are sent out to deliver his messages, the last word might well be his.

Delivering something else.

"You used to be able to hear what the White House's position was on something,” says Scott Lewis, editor of Voice of San Diego. “But we're seeing right now is the President saying a bunch of things that completely contradict the White House's view."

We're also seeing him in news clips wearing a tuxedo, squiring the First Lady around on the rare occasions she's with him these days.

He’s frequently at the "dateline" location of Mar a Lago, Florida -- one of his far-flung resorts -- and taking many weekend getaways that critics note are costing the taxpayers $3 million a pop.

The POTUS' postings on Twitter often become story pegs for the news media, which he makes no secret of hating.

And while he might hope his "Fake News!" accusations hurt the media's credibility, that actually may be helping their finances.

"He is, I think, an enormous annoyance,” says Tony Perry, retired San Diego bureau chief of the "Los Angeles Times."  "But I don't think he's going to sink the 'New York Times' or NBC or 'Voice of San Diego.'  He's just not going to do that. In fact, if anything, he's probably sent more people to subscribe."

That seems to be true.

Subscriptions, online readership and television news viewership numbers are way up.


Doubtful, all the attention that this president commands.

Note: For more on this topic, see NBC 7’s “Politically Speaking at 9 a.m. this Sunday.

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