CNN may not be the only network to host a televised town hall featuring Donald Trump. MSNBC President Rashida Jones says that her network would be open to hosting a town hall featuring Trump if certain parameters were put in place.
“If Trump came to you specifically and says, ‘I want to be on your air to do it,’ would you say yes?” Sara Fischer of Axios asked Jones at the 2023 Cannes Lions Festival.
“Would I say yes? It would be a conversation. I think you’d have to put parameters about how to control the environment,” Jones answered.
.@RJonesNews on whether she would put Donald Trump on-air in a town hall format: "It would be a conversation. I think you'd have to put parameters about how to control the environment." pic.twitter.com/aJiLDRDLfF
— Axios (@axios) June 19, 2023
Earlier this year, CNN hosted a town hall with Donald Trump. Moderated by Katilan Collins, the televised event featured discussions regarding the previous election, the upcoming election and his ongoing legal woes. Leading up to and following the town hall, CNN faced criticism from viewers and critics alike.
“The evening was an epic disaster, beyond even the worst expectations for what would unfold,” Bess Levin of Vanity Fair wrote.
“CNN host Kaitlan Collins couldn’t stop Donald Trump’s town hall lies, because the debate format was rigged for Republican fans,” MSNBC contributor Mehdi Hasan added.
Despite pushback, Collins and CNN have defended their decision to host the event.
“The 70 minutes I spent on stage in New Hampshire with former president Donald Trump was a major inflection point in the Republican party’s search for its nominee and potentially the starting line for America’s next presidential race,” Collins stated.
“It’s important to remember that he is, right now, the GOP frontrunner, a race that he is running, as noted, while being criminally indicted, found civilly liable and under investigation for everything from his handling of classified documents to his business empire.”