This Chilling Video Shows How Local TV Stations Across America Are Parroting Pro-Trump Propaganda

Sinclair Broadcasting is on its way to reaching three-quarters of US homes.

President Trump makes a speech during the Speaker's Lunch on Capitol Hill. Niall Carson/Zuma Press

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

You might know Sinclair Broadcasting, the largest owner of local TV stations in the nation, from 2004, when it required its affiliates to air an anti-John Kerry propaganda film as a news segment and then fired one of its employees who spoke against it. Or from last year, when Last Week Tonight‘s John Oliver bludgeoned it in an 18-minute segment. Or from earlier this month, when CNN’s Brian Stelter discovered that it would be forcing its anchors to record “media bashing” promos that parallel President Donald Trump’s incendiary complaints about the “fake news” media—”a promotional campaign,” as Stelter puts it, “that sounds like pro-Trump propaganda.”

As Mother Jones‘ Andy Kroll has reported, Sinclair Broadcasting is well on its way to reaching three-quarters of all American homes. “The most important force shaping public opinion continues to be local, over-the-air television,” Andrew Jay Schwartzman, a senior attorney at Georgetown’s Communications and Technology Law Clinic, told Kroll last year.

Now, the media-bashing promos are in, and Deadspin put together a terrifying 98-second video that shows how far Sinclair Broadcasting is willing to go to bring right-wing propaganda into your living room. Take a look:

MOTHER JONES NEEDS YOUR HELP

We have about a $170,000 funding gap and less than a week to go in our hugely important First $500,000 fundraising campaign that ends Saturday. We urgently need your help, and a lot of help, so we can pay for the one-of-a-kind journalism you get from us.

Learn more in “Less Dreading, More Doing,” where we lay out this wild moment and how we can keep charging hard for you. And please help if you can: $5, $50, or $500—every gift from every person truly matters right now.

payment methods

MOTHER JONES NEEDS YOUR HELP

We have about a $170,000 funding gap and less than a week to go in our hugely important First $500,000 fundraising campaign that ends Saturday. We urgently need your help, and a lot of help, so we can pay for the one-of-a-kind journalism you get from us.

Learn more in “Less Dreading, More Doing,” where we lay out this wild moment and how we can keep charging hard for you. And please help if you can: $5, $50, or $500—every gift from every person truly matters right now.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate