Mr. Trump was watching on TV — and, like Mr. Parscale, he had questions about the networks’ editorial choices.
On Tuesday, the president issued a rare vote of confidence in CNN, writing on Twitter that he was “very appreciative” for its wall-to-wall convention coverage on Monday. “That was really good for CNN, while at the same time being good for our Country,” Mr. Trump wrote.
In fact, CNN’s and Fox News’s programming on Monday was more or less in keeping with how they handled the Democrats’ gathering.
Because CNN is carrying the conventions with minimal interruptions, it was the best option besides C-SPAN and PBS on Monday for viewers seeking a raw feed of events. CNN anchors broke in occasionally to correct falsehoods and baseless charges lodged by several Republican speakers.
On Fox News, Sean Hannity dipped in and out of the convention during his show’s usual 9 p.m. hour, cutting off some speakers, including Kimberly Guilfoyle, a Trump fund-raising official and former Fox News host. (He did the same with Democratic speakers last week, though he was far more critical then.) At 10 p.m., Fox News began its formal coverage, which was split between commentary and onstage remarks.
Given Mr. Trump’s well-documented reliance on falsehoods, the networks were working this week to balance transmitting the president’s remarks while preventing misinformation from spreading unchecked.
In an unusual tiff, the major TV networks lodged a protest with Republican officials on Tuesday after the Trump campaign agreed to provide Mr. Hannity with additional access to major convention speeches at the White House and at Fort McHenry in Baltimore. During a heated conference call, network executives told Republican officials that it was unfair to grant additional access to Mr. Hannity, a major Trump ally.
Because of safety restrictions relating to the coronavirus, broadcasters are reliant this week on a single, shared audio and video feed of the Republicans’ events. (The same format was in place at the Democratic National Convention.) No major network besides Fox News was granted the special access. Trump campaign officials agreed to some changes after the call.