Journalists with CNN and CBS blasted President Joe Biden for having the U.S. military standing behind him as he gave his speech that demonized MAGA Republicans as a threat to democracy in America.
“Whatever you think of this speech the military is supposed to be apolitical. Positioning Marines in uniform behind President Biden for a political speech flies in the face of that. It’s wrong when Democrats do it. It’s wrong when Republicans do it,” CNN’s Brianna Keilar tweeted.
Tom Nichols of The Atlantic shared the same opinion as Keilar by replying to a person who challenged her position on presidents using military members as a backdrop. He shared photos of Reagan making a speech before members of the army.
“Military people in the background of a speech, especially in the audience, is not the same thing as placing to Marine guards behind the president. But thank you for proving that cult behavior can be found even beyond MAGA world,” responded Nichols.
“It's possible to agree with everything Biden said and still disagree with using Marines as backdrops for a political speech,” Keilar told the critics.
CNN's National Affairs Chief reporter Jeff Zeleny joined Keilar in her critique of the speech, which featured the president's backstage adorned with red blood light, the style of George Orwell's 1984.
“There’s nothing unusual or wrong with a President delivering a political speech — it’s inherent in the job description — but doing it against a backdrop of two Marines standing at attention and the Marine Band is a break with White House traditions,” Zeleny tweeted.
Zeleny's tweet has triggered a fierce reaction from anti-Trumpers, like Jennifer Rubin.
“Excuse me. This is not an RNC convention at the WH … if this is the new CNN, count me out,” responded Rubin.
CBS News Senior White House & Political Correspondent Ed O'Keefe echoed his opinion that Biden's use of the military was too much for a speech.
“Like or loathe what he said tonight, it should be noted: The president spoke tonight on the grounds of a national park, flanked by US Marines, and took direct, specific aim at his predecessor and members of the Republican Party. Another thing we don’t see everyday,” O’Keefe tweeted.
Dan Lamothe of the Washington Post believed the president shouldn't have used the military for an address, claiming it was against his pledge of “return to normalcy.”
“Most civ-mil experts have had concerns for years about an erosion of norms in how the military is injected into politics by senior leaders. Trump objectively blasted through those norms in alarming ways. Biden pledged a return to something better,” tweeted Lamothe.