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Ryan Broderick @broderick
, 27 tweets, 7 min read Read on Twitter
Amol Rajan moderating the #NewsXchange Question Time event this morning just asked David Rhodes, head of CBS News, “When did you know Charlie Rose was a sex pest?” to snickers from the audience.

Then he asked it again to a huge laugh from the audience.
He also kicked off the debate by saying that he’s very excited for “Steve Bannon and other great speakers today.”

By the way, the theme of the week is “polarization” and right before Amol went on, the BBC’s Tony Hall called fake news the greatest threat of our lifetimes.
A student from the audience asked the whole panel about how they feel about “platforming white supremacists.”

Rajan says, “wonder who you’re talking about.”

He polls the audience if Steve Bannon shouldn’t be here today, only about 10 hands out of about 200 go up.
Michaela Küfner from DW on the panel said it’s not her judgment to make when it comes to platforming people like Steve Bannon or Alex Jones. She said it’s about “passing a test of relevance in the public sphere.”
David Rhodes, president of CBS News, said Bannon has probably already got what he wanted because “we’ve spent half this panel talking about him.”
Over a larger question of a White House Press corps boycott in support of Jim Acosta, Rajan asked CNN’s Beitchman if it’s not actually a war between Trump and CNN but actually a “marriage of convenience” because ratings have never been higher.
Rajan asked Nick Wrenn, head of news partnerships EMEA Facebook, if their promise of political neutrality is actually just “corporate nonsense” when the majority of the company’s political donations are to the Democratic Party.
Rajan qsked Renée Kaplan, head of audience engagement at the FT how the FT can say they’re impartial when “there’s no room for black people in your column section,” calling it shameful.

He then pushed back while she was answering, asking “have you hired any black columnists.”
A few protesters have gathered outside of #NewsXchange but it appears they’re protesting Nicola Sturgeon dropping out because Steve Bannon is here.
Bannon protesters have shown up. He’s set to speak in about 40 minutes.
The protest is getting slightly bigger. Some #NewsXchange guests say they’ve been advised by security not to leave the building. Bannon is on in about 10 min.
BBC’s Sarah Smith has started the Bannon interview by saying that she understands some people don’t want him here but that this is about “scrutinizing him.” #NewsXchange
Smith’s first question is if Bannon knows that people think he’s racist.

Bannon responds that he’s not actually racist, but is defending the working class and has already interrupted her trying to get a second question in.
Bannon has used the word “elite” at least 10 times in the first 11 minutes.
“I think as populist nationalists I think it’s important to do mainstream media. I do the BBC...” Bannon says, explaining that he has shifted his focus away from fringe media and now wants mainstream voters.
Smith: “When you were running Breitbart you ran headlines like ‘birth control makes women unattractive and crazy.’”

Bannon says Breitbart’s articles about “black crime” was responsible journalism. Said Breitbart wrote about issues for the working class.
So far Bannon has responded to all of Smith’s questions about racism, fascism, fake news, with long diatribes about representing the working class.

He’s painting the BBC as elite and out of touch.

When asked about anything in anyway he just says he stands by it.
Sarah Smith: “Does Donald Trump tell lies?”

Bannon: “Typical mainstream media. Did you ever ask that of Obama?”


Bannon: “Would BBC ever real-time fact check Corbyn?”

Smith: “Yes!”

Bannon: “We’re adults just admit you hate Donald Trump.”
Smith is now just asking Bannon about fake stuff Trump has said while Bannon explains why it is actually true and why the media always gets it wrong.
Bannon: “Macron is a nationalist, it’s just that the capital of his nation is in Brussels.”
Bannon is basically delivering a monologue about the wonders of enthonationalism and sometimes asking Smith a question. Even the featured tweet screens have flipped.

Bannon: “We can go through the fact sheets your staff put together all night. This is a game.”
Smith asks, “Orban said he doesn’t want to live in a multi-colored country.”

Bannon is now explaining why in Hungary that’s actually a fine thing to say.
Bannon: “The Times Up movement is the most important political movement in the world.”

Now he’s comparing it to the women of the Tea Party.

“We have to have great arguments about why the patriarchy makes sense.”
Smith: “Are you a feminist.”

Bannon starts talking about his daughter serving in the military and all the women in his life he loves.
Glad we’ve held Steve Bannon accountable today.
Alright, that’s that. Bannon did some audience questions but obviously he didn’t properly answer a single one of them. He ended the talk by calling the entire audience the opposition party and said he’s excited to see everyone in the Spring for European elections.

The #NewsXchange panel after Steve Bannon is about diversity and inclusiveness in media and an audience member just stood up and asked why half the room cleared out after Bannon. Just for some context.
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