A stunning admission from the CBS CEO

CREDO action
Tell CBS News: Stop boosting Trump coverage for profits

Tell CBS News President David Rhodes:
"Reject the comments from CBS CEO Les Moonves. Commit to cover this presidential election fairly and responsibly, and to not erode the values of diversity and good of the country in an attempt to derive profits and ratings from the hateful campaign of Donald Trump."

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Dear 5849376,

Tell CBS News: Stop boosting Trump coverage for profits

Early this week, CBS CEO Les Moonves came out and said it: Profiting from hate is not only more important to him than the good of the country — he wants to do more of it.

Speaking on a panel in San Francisco, Moonves said Trump's campaign "may not be good for America, but it's damn good for CBS" and that "The money's rolling in, this is fun." He went on to say, "it's a terrible thing to say, but bring it on, Donald, go ahead, keep going."1

Having the CEO of one of the nation's most powerful corporate media outlets blatantly admit that profits and ratings are driving the non-stop, wall-to-wall coverage of Donald Trump's incendiary rhetoric is not only a damning indictment of corporate media, but also incredibly dangerous for the country. We need to make it clear to Moonves, CBS, and all traditional corporate media that Americans hold them to a much higher standard when it comes to racism and intolerance and the media's responsibility to accurately and fairly inform the public.

Tell CBS News: Stop letting profits drive coverage of Donald Trump's racist campaign. Click here to sign the petition.

Not only are Moonves' admission irresponsible, they contradict his company's own diversity and tolerance policy which states, "CBS Corporation, and its divisions are committed to building an environment that values diversity throughout the corporation and in its business practices."2

It's fair to say that if an employee of CBS was caught making similar statements as Trump, he or she would be fired or disciplined. But the CBS president is not only gleefully promoting Trump, he can't wait to do more.

This wasn't the first time Moonves went on record egging on one of the most hateful and divisive campaigns in American political history. During an investor presentation in December, Moonves was recorded saying, "Go Donald! Keep getting out there!"3

It should come as no surprise to anyone who has seen TV news recently that traditional corporate media is giving Trump an outsized platform, legitimizing and amplifying his hate.4 But that should have no place in an organization who says they are "recognizing the power and influence a media company carries through its various business units."

CBS's diversity statement says, "Our goal is to impact the industry." If CBS wants to impact the industry to promote the values of diversity the company claims to hold, CBS News should commit to cover this presidential election fairly and responsibly, and to not erode the values of diversity and good of the country in an attempt to derive profits and ratings from the hateful campaign of Donald Trump.

Tell CBS News: Stop letting profits drive coverage of Donald Trump's racist campaign. Click here to sign the petition.

Thank you for your activism.

Murshed Zaheed, Deputy Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets

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  1. Lee Fang, "CBS CEO: 'For Us, Economically, Donald's Place in This Election Is a Good Thing'," The Intercept, February 29, 2016.
  2. "CBS Corporation: Diversity"
  3. Fang, "CBS CEO: 'For Us, Economically, Donald's Place in This Election Is a Good Thing'."
  4. John Nichols, "The Discourse Suffers When Trump Gets 23 Times As Much Coverage as Sanders," The Nation, February 14, 2015.


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