Former President Donald Trump will be returning to a place that he has regularly attacked – CNN.
Next week, Trump will appear for a town hall with CNN, where he will field questions from Kaitlan Collins, one of the network’s rising stars.
A recent press release revealed that the event that will be held on May 10 will be done before a live audience. Those in attendance will be undeclared voters and registered Republicans in the state of New Hampshire – all of whom said they have the intention to vote in the presidential primary in the state when it rolls around next year.
It’s been seven years since Trump has appeared on CNN, a network he often refers to as “Fake News CNN.”
This makes Trump’s agreement to appear on the network rather remarkable, all things considered.
There are a few different factors at work here that could have convinced Trump to move forward with this appearance.
For one, a CNN town hall gives Trump a huge audience to reach people throughout the country. It’s also a chance for him to stand out and be the only presidential candidate on stage. So, even if he is taking questions from a person and a network who probably won’t be on his side, it’s still solo air time that not a lot of other candidates will ever get.
In addition, it gives Trump an early chance to start building up his following and laying the groundwork for his major push forward in next year’s GOP primary elections. Trump was the first person in either party to announce his candidacy for president, and that gave him the initial advantage of getting in front of people to talk about his agenda and policies.
This CNN town hall will allow him to continue that, on a more official basis than just posting on the social media platform that he owns, Truth Social.
What will be interesting to see is how Trump handles himself with Collins asking him questions on behalf of CNN – and how he approaches the entire event knowing that the audience watching at home is not one that is usually automatically behind him.
Can he keep his composure and respond to some questions that Collins asks, even if they are somewhat attacking? Will he even care to keep his composure and try to reach out to undecided voters? Or, will he continue to lean in to his tried-and-true practices and double down on the same rhetoric?
What will be interesting, too, is how Collins will handle the entire situation. Not only is it a “step up” for her in terms of her professional career advancement, but it’ll be with a presidential candidate who she knows doesn’t really like her.
Collins has some experience with Trump, of course, as she was a White House correspondent for CNN during the Trump administration. That job was much different, though, than it will be on May 10 when she asks Trump questions on the one-on-one town hall.