Jake Tapper and Dana Bash, CNN’s Thursday night presidential debate co-hosts, repeatedly showed nasty bias against former President Donald Trump during previous network remarks.

Tapper and Bash’s bias is significant because they could use their positions to produce an unfair debate in which Trump might have to contend with them while also debating President Joe Biden.

“Trump’s real debate opponent on Thursday will be CNN,” businessman David Sacks posted on X. “I’m sure the CNN debate will be fair and unbiased based on all of CNN’s actions for the last 8 years!” Donald Trump Jr. mocked.

File/ Joe Biden stops to talk with news anchors from l-r., Ilia Calderón, Jake Tapper, and Dana Bash, following the conclusion of the Democratic presidential primary debate at CNN Studios, Sunday, March 15, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

The event already appears framed in favor of the president. Biden’s performance expectations are low while the debate rules benefit him.
In addition, CNN analysts will immediately fact-check Trump after the debate, CNN Political Director David Chalian told the New York Times, noting the debate is “not the ideal arena for live fact-checking.”

Tapper, one of Trump’s sharpest critics and who purports to be an unbiased journalist, previously moderated two Republican presidential debates.

His first came in 2015, featuring Trump, with about 23 million viewers. It was the second most-watched primary debate in history. The second came in 2016, with a reported 12 million viewers and, once again, featured Trump. Despite Tapper’s success, he appears bitterly critical of the former president. Tapper “hates Donald Trump,” Breitbart News’s John Nolte reported.

Below are 15 times Tapper attacked Trump with vicious claims:

  1. Suggested Trump was a nightmare: “For tens of millions of our fellow Americans, their long national nightmare is over.”
  2. Claimed Trump “continues to lie to the American people” about coronavirus testing.
  3. Retweeted a post that called Trump “100% insane.”
  4. Shamed Trump upon being hospitalized for the coronavirus.
  5. Described Trump’s presidency as a “disaster.”
  6. Ran a segment about the alleged shape of Trump’s penis.
  7. Questioned the 2016 election by perpetrating the Russia collusion hoax.
  8. Suggested Trump tried to kill democracy.
  9. Ordered CNN’s control room not to cover Trump live.
  10. Claimed Trump was a “rather angry defendant, saying there’s no case here.”
  11. Refused to cover Trump live due to “potentially dangerous” content.
  12. Suggested Trump was leading the nation “down the drain.”
  13. Accused Trump of siding with Russia during Russia collusion hoax.
  14. Said Trump “sided with the enemy” amid Democrat claims of a stolen 2016 election.
  15. Ordered Trump to “stop whining” after winning the 2016 election.

Bash is also a previous host of debates. In 2019, she hosted the 2019 Democrat presidential primary debate where Vice President Kamala Harris slammed Biden on civil rights. Bash also co-moderated a Republican primary debate in 2023 with Tapper between failed presidential candidate Nikki Haley and Gov. Ron DeSantis (R). Trump was noticeably absent from the debate.

Below are 15 times Bash attacked Trump with nasty claims:

  1. Accused Trump of “race baiting.”
  2. Suggested Trump is sexist.
  3. Claimed Trump made antisemitic remarks.
  4. Alleged former Vice President Mike Pence’s life was threatened by January 6 rioters provoked by Trump.
  5. Said Trump’s coronavirus briefing was “propaganda” after he contradicted his CDC director.
  6. Accused Trump of being anti-science.
  7. Alleged Trump politicized the pandemic for political benefit.
  8. Said it was “unfortunately for America” that the Supreme Court decided to keep Trump on the ballot.
  9. Claimed Joe Biden “found his voice” after he attacked Trump’s remarks on George Floyd’s death.
  10. Pushed the Russia collusion hoax.
  11. Suggested Trump was unpresidential during his tenure.
  12. Described Trump’s firing of James Comey as like a scene from “The Godfather.”
  13. Accused Trump of “outright lies.”
  14. Said Trump appeared to use racist language against Sen. Mitch McConnell’s wife.
  15. Suggested Trump should say “sorry” for his alleged role in January 6.

“Jake Tapper and Dana Bash are well respected veteran journalists who have covered politics for more than five decades combined,” CNN said in a statement.

“They have extensive experience moderating major political debates, including CNN’s Republican Presidential Primary Debate this cycle,” the network said. “There are no two people better equipped to co-moderate a substantial and fact-based discussion and we look forward to the debate on June 27 in Atlanta.”

Editor’s Note: This article incorrectly stated that Jake Tapper ran two reports on the alleged shape of Trump’s penis. Tapper only fixated on Trump’s penis for one report; CNN later had Don Lemon interview Stormy Daniels on the subject. The text has been updated to correct this inaccuracy.

Wendell Husebo is a political reporter with Breitbart News and a former GOP War Room Analyst. He is the author of Politics of Slave Morality. Follow Wendell on “X” @WendellHusebø or on Truth Social @WendellHusebo.

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