John Oliver blasts Sinclair for making local TV news anchors recite a speech about 'false news' like 'members of a brainwashed cult'

HBO‘Last Week Tonight with John Oliver.’
  • John Oliver took aim at Sinclair Broadcast Group on Sunday after a viral video last week showed dozens of the company’s local TV news anchors reciting a speech about “false news.”
  • The video follows a CNN report describing how Sinclair forced its nearly 200 local news stations to air “must run” promotional packages akin to “pro-Trump propaganda.”
  • In the video, the anchors recite a speech about “the troubling trend of irresponsible, one-sided news stories plaguing our country.”
  • Oliver, who has previously called out Sinclair for its “noticeably conservative” bias, played the full video on Sunday and said Sinclair anchors sounded like members of a “brainwashed cult.”

John Oliver took aim at Sinclair Broadcast Group on Sunday’s “Last Week Tonight” after a Deadspin video showing dozens of the company’s local TV news anchors reciting a speech about “false news” went viral last week.

The video follows a CNN report last month describing how Sinclair forced the nearly 200 local news stations it owns to air “must run” promotional packages akin to “pro-Trump propaganda.”

In the Deadspin video, the anchors recite a speech about “the troubling trend of irresponsible, one-sided news stories plaguing our country,” echoing President Donald Trump’s consistent bashing of news outlets’ coverage of his administration as “fake news.”

Oliver, who in July dedicated an episode to calling Sinclair out for its “noticeably conservative” bias, played the Deadspin video on Sunday night’s episode.

“Nothing says ‘we value independent media’ like dozens of reporters forced to repeat the same message over and over again like members of a brainwashed cult,” Oliver said.

Watch Oliver’s full segment:

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