The Sunday Telegraph

Biden is getting a free ride for behaviour that would have seen Trump denounced

- FOLLOW Douglas Murray on Twitter @DouglasKMu­rray; READ MORE at cctelegrap­

Icannot help but note for the dozenth time an entry in a game we might call “How different it would be if Trump had done it”. You do not have to have any special liking for the former president of the United States to notice that there has been a remarkable change of tone in the Left-wing media’s coverage between his administra­tion and the current one.

Last week, the American and internatio­nal media went big on the significan­ce of the meeting in Geneva between presidents Biden and Putin. In reality these meetings are never of any much importance beyond what both sides want to signal to their respective domestic audiences.

Ahead of the meeting Biden’s choice was to make himself look tough as nails in facing down the killer Putin.

Standing in front of a crowd of American service personnel at RAF Mildenhall before the summit, President Biden told a cheering crowd that he was going to meet with Mr Putin “to let him know what I want him to know”. It was a rather vain boast to engage in. But it was also impossible not to consider what the reports would have looked like if Mr Trump had said that.

“Trump pushes world to brink of war” would have been one of the milder headlines. Everywhere people would have warned of the president’s “naivety” in ramping up tensions like this. Had Trump had cheering American military in the background, even worse accusation­s would have been made. After the summit, CNN’s chief White House correspond­ent lobbed President Biden a softball question, asking why he was reported to be “confident” that Putin was going to change his behaviour.

Biden promptly turned around and snapped at Kaitlan Collins, “What the hell, what do you do all the time?” and went on to correct her.

He subsequent­ly apologised for snapping, but again it is impossible not to make the comparison.

Had this been Trump, it would have been reported that he had turned on a

CNN reporter because he wished he could have a media as pliant as his new friend Vladimir Putin has. He would have been lambasted for humiliatin­g a journalist. And he would have been accused of misogyny for turning on a female journalist in particular. The airwaves would have been thick.

And this is the problem that much of America’s Left-wing media now has. Everybody can see through it. It is wholly transparen­t. The public knows that it has an agenda that they can see exceptiona­lly clearly. As a result they seek out alternativ­e media which gives them what they consider a fairer lens. So bit by bit, the country finds nothing that it can agree on. It is a warning tale of a kind. Of the damage that can be done to a democracy by people high on the self-regard of imagining that they are saving it.

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