Several news outlets, most famously the Huffington Post, wrote off Donald Trump as “entertainment” while he was running for president. Business Insider CEO Henry Blodget says he took now-President Trump seriously from Day 1.
“Based on traveling with him and going to one of his rallies, it was obvious that a lot of Americans were relating to what he had to say,” Blodget said on the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka. “I’m incredibly glad we covered him seriously from the beginning.”
Blodget, who before the election authored a prescient essay called “Waking Up to President Trump,” says crediting Trump’s victory to too much media coverage “is just crazy.” And he said a big part of Trump’s campaign message — that big companies have been screwing over customers and employees — “is actually great for all of us to hear.”
“We’ve gotten into a crazy environment where there’s somehow a law out there, you're supposed to pay people as little as you can,” Blodget said. “Come on! It’s always a choice. And one of the things that Trump identified relatively early is, we’ve got to take better care of people who are actually working for a living in this country.”
However, that positive message is stirred into a pot with several dubious and disturbing policies, Blodget noted.
“Now the question is, what of these policies are actually going to move us toward the better future that we all want, and what’s distracting and, ultimately, what is fundamentally American?” he asked. “One of the reasons there has been so much focus on what President Trump has done so far is, in addition to making quick decisions and action, which a lot of people support, he is also advocating some things that are not just un-American, but I would say are anti-American.”
“We had, from the beginning in this country, celebrated and encouraged a free press and the First Amendment,” he added. “To have an administration building an attack on the vast majority of the media is frightening. And then tariffs and trade wars, and the travel ban we got over the weekend, these are anti-American ideas. And I think the administration will continue to see huge pushback on them.”
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This article originally appeared on Recode.net.