The House Intelligence Committee closed its inquiry into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election on Monday, March 12th. While the committee did confirm the Russkies were attempting to sow chaos surrounding the election, it found that they weren’t specifically trying to help Trump, and that there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
Oddly enough, the three major television network news outlets, who seemingly have spent three to six minutes every night on the “Trump-Russian Collusion Scandal” since before the election itself, were loathe to report on this significant finding. Yes, the same networks that jointly spent hundreds of hours in animated indignation, speculation, excitement, mockery and virtue-signaling while reporting on the much-cherished “scandal” managed to carve out a total of 58 seconds of airtime to devote to the committee’s “not guilty” verdict.
The CBS Evening News gave 31 seconds to the findings, carefully noting that it was Republicans who issued the report and that Democrats on the House panel are expected to put out their own report...with different findings. And that the Senate Intelligence Committee is also investigating Russian meddling. Oh, and that the special counsel, Robert Mueller is, too.
ABC’s World News Tonight gave the development 27 seconds of precious airtime.
NBC didn’t mention it at all. This is understandable, however, given the other pressing news items they had to squeeze into the broadcast. For example, they berated Trump’s school safety plan and solemnly noted the continuing turnover in the White House, high-lighted a Powerball lottery winner and the story surrounding her, and appeared utterly gob-smacked by billionaire Warren Buffet’s $1 million employee March Madness NCAA basketball bracket challenge.
Had the findings been reversed, the three networks would’ve cancelled all other programming for the remainder of the month, and launched a revised schedule of 24-hour-a-day “Trump Did It” programming replete with expanded newscasts, “special reports,” documentaries, call-in shows, and probably a musical or two.