Former President Donald Trump will sit down with CNN next week for a town hall event in New Hampshire, the network announced Monday.
Trump, who has often criticized CNN for being “fake news,” will make his first appearance on the network since 2016.
CNN’s Kaitlan Collins will moderate the event at New Hampshire’s Saint Anselm College on May 10. The town hall will air on the network at 8:00 p.m. EST.
Trump’s CNN appearance is part of a plan to broaden his messaging to a wider audience, according to Politico.
As Politico detailed:
The former president and his staff have re-engaged the mainstream press corps after largely shunning them. They have been in talks with sit-downs with several other notable outlets, including NBC. He has also invited an array of reporters from mainstream outlets to fly with him on his plane to and from campaign events.
Those in the former president’s orbit believe that by giving interviews and access to mainstream outlets, they can broaden Trump’s message — and create a contrast with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has widely been seen as more closed off toward mainstream outlets while granting interviews to conservative ones.
However, Trump’s CNN appearance is also an apparent shot at Fox News, the conservative cable news outlet that recently parted ways with Tucker Carlson.
Last month, the Republican National Committee announced that Fox News would host the first Republican presidential primary debate, which caught Trump off guard.
Trump posted on Truth Social last week:
I see that everybody is talking about the Republican Debates, but nobody got my approval, or the approval of the Trump Campaign, before announcing them. When you’re leading by seemingly insurmountable numbers, and you have hostile Networks with angry, TRUMP & MAGA hating anchors asking the “questions,” why subject yourself to being libeled and abused? Also, the Second Debate is being held at the Reagan Library, the Chairman of which is, amazingly, Fred Ryan, Publisher of The Washington Post. NO!
Trump has not participated in a town hall event since late 2020 when he sat down with NBC’s Savannah Guthrie.