Americas

Top aides Trump picked from Fox News, CNBC

Trump has bestowed more interviews on Fox News than any other news outlet.

    President Donald Trump’s favourite TV network is increasingly serving as a West Wing casting call, as the president reshapes his administration with camera-ready personalities.

    “He’s looking for people who are ready to be part of that television White House,” said Kendall Phillips, a communication and rhetorical studies professor at Syracuse University.

    Phillips added, “This is the Fox television presidency all the way up and down.”

    TV hires

    • Bolton: Trump’s new national security adviser, John Bolton, is a former UN ambassador, a White House veteran – and, perhaps most importantly, a Fox News channel talking head. 

    • Bolton’s appointment, rushed out late Thursday, follows Trump’s recent attempt to recruit Fox guest Joseph diGenova for his legal team.

    • Bolton went on Fox to discuss his selection and said it had happened so quickly that “I think I’m still a Fox News contributor.”

    • Nauert: The State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert was a former Fox News anchor. 

    • Kudlow: Recent TV-land addition to the Trump White House is veteran CNBC contributor Larry Kudlow, as top economic adviser.

    • Schlapp, Sayegh: Other Fox faces on Trump’s team include communications adviser Mercedes Schlapp and Treasury Department spokesman Tony Sayegh, who were both former Fox commentators.

    • DiGenova, who has accused FBI officials of trying to “frame” Trump for nonexistent crimes, will not be joining the legal team because of “conflicts”, said Trump counsel Jay Sekulow. 

    • Sekulow, however, said diGenova and his wife, attorney Victoria Toensing, also a frequent commentator on Fox, would not be prevented from helping Trump “in other legal matters”.


    Fox News

    People close to the president say he thinks Fox provides the best coverage of his untraditional presidency.

    • It also provides him a window into conservative thinking, with commentary from Republican legislators and right-wing thinkers – many of whom are speaking directly to the audience in the Oval Office.

    • On-air personalities Sean Hannity and Laura Ingraham are favourites of the president, who also speaks to them privately.

    • Earlier in March, Trump promoted Hannity on Twitter, saying: “@seanhannity on @foxandfriends now! Great! 8:18 A.M.”

    • The president’s early-morning tweets often appear to be a reaction to Fox programming. For example, in March, Trump tweeted that he was “considering” a veto of a massive spending bill needed to keep the government open, not long after it was assailed on “Fox and Friends” as a “swamp budget”.

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