July 18, 2017 Last Updated 12:16 pm

Reddit AMA with Chris Cillizza proves to be a sadistic classic

The news that Chris Cillizza had moved to CNN must have been received like the commutation of a death sentence for the staff at The Washington Post. That CNN would have hired him was a sure that sign that Jeff Zucker was working hard to see how much destruction he could do to the news network before eventually taking a buyout.

So, news that Cillizza has agreed to do a AMA on Reddit was hard to believe. Really? Is he so lacking in self-awareness that he didn’t know what would follow. And follow it did, as the very first questions were long take downs of the news personality.

“Hi everyone, I’m Chris Cillizza, editor at large for CNN Politics…”


Chris, have you considered the fact that your reporting style of repeated and absurd focus on completely inane subjects, like “an analysis of the Trump-Macron handshake” not only makes us all collectively stupider, but fundamentally devalues the role politics has in shaping our lives in favor of absurd horserace coverage that focuses on inside baseball to the exclusion of real working families?

Do you regret your monomaniacal focus on the emails story in 2015-16, a focus with a clickbait orientation that both leaned heavily on emerging stories with insufficient information at hand and arguably gave other stories (ones equally or more important) short shrift?

Do you believe that asking someone 500 times whether they’re going to run for president is quality journalism and/or helps the national dialog in any way? I guess my question is really whether you have done any soul-searching in light of the 2016 election and how you guys gave Trump his platform?

Chris, do you believe that one of the most substantial pieces of legislation that has the potential for millions to lose their healthcare should have its progress represented using “emojis,” much like a child would respond to a parent’s inquiry about how their day at school went?

Hey, Chris.
Are you aware that real, actual horse races exist? I ask this because you seem desperate to cover a horse race, to the point that you take life-and-death political struggles that affect a nation of 300 million people and a planet of billions and treat them like they’re a horse race.
Why not just “cut out the middle man”, so to speak, and cover an actual horse race?

Incredibly, there quickly reached a point where one actually began to feel sorry for Cillizza. Like the child who thinks everyone is applauding them for their performance, only to find that everyone is laughing, it felt after a while like it was too much piling on.

Others felt that way as well.

Hi Chris, it’s Ashley Feinberg. My question is how could you have possibly thought that this would be a good idea?

Hi, I’m Libby Watson, I’m a staff writer at Fusion. Why do you think so many other journalists think you suck?

Unfortunately, it is true. Cillizza does represent much that one can find wrong with American journalism. But I suppose Cillizza should be given credit for soldiering on through the AMA, though one sensed that his nerves must have been getting a bit frayed after taking so many ego blows.

And while those who asked questions ended up learning nothing of value, the question is did Cillizza?

Next week: AMA with Tucker Carlson!

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