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ABC News correspondent expresses concern about coverage if Trump runs in 2024 because he is 'essentially an antidemocratic candidate'

·3 min read
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  • Donald Trump
    Donald Trump
    45th President of the United States
  • Jonathan Karl
    American journalist
Donald Trump
Former President Donald Trump.Sean Rayford/Getty Images
  • The ABC News reporter Jonathan Karl is thinking about the possibility of a 2024 run by Donald Trump.

  • The "Betrayal" author told outlets that reporting on a second Trump campaign would be challenging.

  • He called Trump "someone who is running in a system that is trying to undermine that very system."

Journalists already gearing up for the 2024 presidential campaign are preparing for the possibility of a second Trump campaign — a prospect that could pose the "greatest challenge ever facing campaign reporters," according to ABC News' chief Washington correspondent, Jonathan Karl.

The longtime reporter and author of "Betrayal: The Final Act of the Trump Show" offered his thoughts on the hypothetical in a series of media interviews earlier this month while promoting his new book, which details the final year of Donald Trump's tumultuous presidency.

In a lengthy interview with Deadline and in an on-air appearance with CNN's Brian Stelter, Karl discussed the challenges of reporting responsibly on Trump, whom he called "essentially an antidemocratic candidate."

"How do you cover a candidate who is running both against whoever the Democratic candidate is but also running against the very democratic system that makes all of this possible?" Karl posited during the Deadline interview.

The news media struggled to cover Trump during both his candidacy and presidency, largely because of Trump's willingness to repeat falsehoods even after they'd been publicly debunked. Trump from early in his candidacy also sought to stoke outrage toward and skepticism of journalists and news outlets in a bid to discredit negative stories about him.

Trump averaged numerous falsehoods a day while in office, ramping up his disinformation particularly around his loss in the 2020 election.

Trump's continued effort to cast doubt on his loss and his numerous attempts to overturn his loss to Joe Biden have journalists and experts alike worriedly wondering what a Trump 2024 campaign might look like.

"I think it's tremendously challenging," Karl told Deadline, adding that Trump was "just saying things that are not true, that are designed to misinform, that are designed to erode credibility and belief in our electoral system."

"So how do you cover a debate?" he added. "How do you cover a speech? How do you sit down for a long live interview with him as a candidate?"

Karl, who served as chief White House correspondent for ABC News from December 2012 through the end of Trump's administration, made similar comments during his CNN appearance earlier this week.

"You're covering someone who is running in a system, that is trying to undermine that very system," he told CNN's Stelter. "Somebody who is going to be perpetually lying."

"He is consumed and obsessed with 2020 and trying to convince the world that that election was somehow corrupt, that it was filled with fraud, that he actually won it," he continued. "As journalists, we can't be a conduit for that lie."

Trump made headlines over the weekend when he once again hinted at a 2024 run.

"I think if I run, I'll get it," he said on a Fox Business appearance. "Look, I have a 94, 95%, even in the CPAC, I had a 98% approval rating. So if I decide to run, I'll get it very easily."

"Most people have said if I run, they won't run against me, so I think that's good," he added.

But Karl has his doubts about whether the onetime president will really make another run for the top seat.

"I think he wants to make us believe he's running because it keeps him relevant, keeps him generating attention for himself," Karl told CNN. "But I'm not sure he really wants to do it again."

"For all his delusions about 2020, the last thing he really wants to do is lose again," he added.

A representative for Trump did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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