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Report: Trump Rejects NBC's Request for Pre-Super Bowl Interview

Craig Bannister
By Craig Bannister | January 19, 2018 | 3:09 PM EST

Pres. Trump stands in respect during National Anthem. (Screenshot)

Citng an unnamed source, Variety magazine is claiming “exclusive” news that President Donald Trump will break the tradition of presidents giving pre-game Super Bowl interviews on the game-broadcasting networks.

The “person familiar” with the news told Variety, exclusively, that Trump declined NBC’s request for an interview, even though he gave a pre-game interview last year:

“The White House has at present, according to a person familiar with the matter, indicated to NBC News that President Donald Trump will not take part in a recent Super Bowl ritual: a pre-game interview between the commander-in-chief and the news unit of the network hosting the game.

“Last year, Trump held forth with former Fox News Channel anchor Bill O’Reilly, and in 2016, President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama conferred with Gayle King of CBS News. NBC News’ invitation to the President to take part in such a discussion remains open, this person said.”

If Trump had agreed to the interview, he probably would have been grilled about his opposition to NFL players protesting when the National Anthem is played before games, as well as about his political policies, Variety says.

NBC’s Super Bowl executive producer has promised to show on-air, identify and explain to the game’s worldwide audience, any player protests at the Super Bowl.

What’s more, research from the Media Research Center’s Newbusters division shows that 87.8 percent of NBC’s coverage of President Trump has been negative. Detailing MRC’s study of network news coverage of Trump in 2017, beginning with his inauguration, MRC’s Research Director Rich Noyes explains:

“When MRC analyzed all evening news coverage of the President in 2017, we found that 87.8 percent of Trump's coverage on the NBC Nightly News was negative, compared to a mere 12.2 percent that was positive.”

NBC News declined to comment to Variety on its report, and the White House had not replied by press time.

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