President Trump was up early Tuesday, mocking ESPN a day after the cable sports channel suspended sportscaster Jemele Hill for violating the company’s social media policy.
Hill called for a boycott of Dallas Cowboys advertisers after team owner Jerry Jones said players who protested the national anthem would be kept out of the game. Trump has said protesting players are disrespecting the flag and the anthem.
“With Jemele Hill at the mike, it is no wonder ESPN ratings have ‘tanked,’ in fact, tanked so badly it is the talk of the industry!” Trump tweeted before dawn Tuesday.
CNN reported that ESPN had 90 million subscribers as of September 2016, down from a high of 100 million in 2010.
The twitterverse responded, of course.
“SPEAKING OF LOW RATINGS, HAVE YOU SEEN YOURS?! SAD!!!!” tweeted @TravisAllen02.
@realDonaldTrump also went after the NFL for its tax status.
“Why is the NFL getting massive tax breaks while at the same time disrespecting our Anthem, Flag and Country? Change tax law!” Trump tweeted.
“The NFL’s tax status has been controversial for years,” Fox News reported. “The league announced in 2015 it would voluntarily lose its tax-exempt status, but the league still enjoys various tax breaks. According to Time, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell called the tax-exemption a ‘distraction’ in 2015 and said it has been ‘mischaracterized repeatedly in recent years.’ ”
Hill got in trouble with ESPN last month for calling Trump a white supremacist.
Trump reacted to that, saying “ESPN is paying a really big price for its politics (and bad programming). People are dumping it in RECORD numbers. Apologize for untruth!”
Hill “previously acknowledged letting her colleagues and company down with an impulsive tweet,” ESPN said Monday in a statement posted to Twitter. “In the aftermath, all employees were reminded of how individual tweets may reflect negatively on ESPN and that such actions would have consequences. Hence this decision.”