As President Joe Biden receives criticism for the poor optics of his divisive primetime speech on Thursday, viral footage appears to show that CNN altered the ‘blood-red’ background lighting to a lighter shade of hot pink during his address.
During Biden’s speech, observers noticed that the optics were tone-deaf as he characterized “MAGA Republicans” as a threat to the nation and democracy while using authoritarian visuals with U.S. Marines as props in the background along with menacing lighting.
Watch the moment CNN slowly adjusts the camera settings when the blood-red lighting behind Dark Brandon is looking a little too authoritarian.
— Mia Cathell (@MiaCathell) September 2, 2022
Mediate, a media watchdog, released side-by-side footage of other major news networks – at the same moment of the speech – maintaining the dark red background while CNN’s gradually shifted to a lighter shade.
A CNN spokesperson claimed that the lighting change was due to a technical glitch from CBS News’ pool feed, the New York Post reported.
However, conservative social media users accused the far-left network of attempting to soften Biden’s image as the speech received poor reviews.
“Lol halfway through Brandon’s speech, CNN tried to subtly alter the color of the background lighting, presumably to make it look less evil and creepy,” tweeted RNC official Jake Schneider.
Lol halfway through Brandon’s speech, CNN tried to subtly alter the color of the background lighting, presumably to make it look less evil and creepy pic.twitter.com/uX9DkP5pBJ
— Jake Schneider (@jacobkschneider) September 2, 2022
Even far-left CNN host Brianna Keilar criticized the optics of Biden’s speech over the decision to place U.S. Marines in the background.
“Whatever you think of this speech the military is supposed to be apolitical,” Keilar tweeted. “Positioning Marines in uniform behind President Biden for a political speech flies in the face of that.”
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.
— Brianna Keilar (@brikeilarcnn) September 2, 2022
If confirmed that CNN decided to soften Biden’s image partway through his address, it would raise questions as to whether new CNN CEO and Chairman, Chris Licht, is serious about his claims to change the direction of the network from its left-wing partisan stance.
As Breitbart News reported, despite being panned for his Thursday address, Biden has doubled down on his rhetoric, releasing a statement on his social media Sunday morning, saying:
The MAGA agenda represents an extremism that threatens the very foundations of our Republic. It doesn’t respect our Constitution. It doesn’t believe in the rule of law. And it doesn’t recognize the will of the people.
Biden’s recent rhetoric is a stark contrast to his inaugural address in January 2021, where he claimed he wanted to be a unifier and to “restore the soul” of the nation. However, it was noted he was also demonizing some Americans of different political leanings during that address as well.
You can follow Ethan Letkeman on Twitter at @EthanLetkeman.