Clinton: I Think Democrats Will Continue to Face a 'Very Difficult Media Environment'

September 12, 2017

Former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Tuesday lamented the disadvantage that Democrats face in media coverage, arguing they will continue to confront a "difficult" press going forward.

Clinton said on the "Pod Save America" podcast, hosted by former Barack Obama speechwriters, that the political right has created "propaganda channels" that create "obstacles" for Democrats.

"That's what I call Fox News. It has outlets like Breitbart and crazy Infowars, and things like that," she said.

Clinton argued that Russia and social media sites like Facebook "aided and abetted" these outlets during the 2016 presidential campaign.

"In this particular election, it was aided and abetted by the Russians and the role that Facebook and other platforms played," she said.

"We are late to that," she continued, appearing to refer to Democrats. "We did not understand how a reality TV campaign would so dominate the media environment."

Clinton said that she tried to build on the success of Obama's campaign but had trouble "breaking through," adding that Democrats face a "difficult media environment" and will continue to do so in the future.

"I think the Democrats can do a lot, but they're still going to face a very difficult media environment. And we've got to figure out how we're going to break through," Clinton said.

Clinton did offer some suggestions on how to break through.

"I mean obviously more podcasts, more other ways of communicating so voices can be heard and real positions can be understood is part of it," she said. "But we're still at a disadvantage."

Later in the interview, Clinton shifted from another subject back to how to deal with media bias against Democrats.

"But I also think people with an 'R' by their name said, 'OK, I want my tax cut; I want my Supreme Court justice.' So there was a calculation as well as an emotional reaction," Clinton said. "So what are we gonna do about it?"

"Well, I don't understand why people who share our views aren't more willing to invest in media that can be competitive," she continued, answering her own question. "Cause what you've got is a right-wing advocacy propaganda and you've got a kind of mainstream media that engages in false equivalency."

Clinton again highlighted what she perceives as unique challenges that Democrats face from the media.

"And it's tough if you are a Democrat trying to navigate through that, to get the coverage that is really going to reflect the reality that you're facing out there on the campaign."