This past April, celebrity Obama donors Beyonce Knowles and husband Jay-Z took a controversial trip to the communist country of Cuba. Knowles appeared on Monday's Good Morning America and Nightline, but ABC continued to offer no skepticism about the details of the visit. Instead, reporter Amy Robach discovered her inner-entertainment journalist, wondering, "What did you make of the controversy?"
That was the extent of Robach's questions on the topic. No mention of the fact that Knowles and her husband raised over $4 million for Obama in 2012, prior to being given special permission to make the trip. (American tourists are barred from traveling there.) Robach simply summarized, "But the busy star took a break last month, traveling to Cuba with her husband Jay-Z for their fifth wedding anniversary, igniting a firestorm from lawmakers." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Of course, ABC didn't think the story was a "firestorm" at the time. On April 9, 2013, GMA news reader Josh Elliott dismissed, "Meanwhile, an uproar over Beyonce and Jay-Z's trip to Cuba may be much ado about nothing." Elliott skipped the couple's financial help for the Democratic candidate. He also didn't wonder why the trip was approved.
On Monday's Nightline, co-anchor Terry Moran treated the story like a typical fluff piece. He gushed, "This is Beyonce's world and we're just renting little corners of it." As though she were a excited fan, Robach insisted, "Beyonce wants the world to see her and know her as a normal mom."
Not once did Robach ask how the trip was approved. Are these journalists or Entertainment Tonight correspondents?
A partial transcript of the May 6 Nightline segment is below:
TERRY MORAN: This is Beyonce's world and we're just renting little corners of it.
AMY ROBACH: But the busy star took a break last month, traveling to Cuba with her husband Jay-Z for their fifth wedding anniversary, igniting a firestorm from lawmakers. What did you make of the controversy?
BEYONCE KNOWLES: It was actually quite shocking. [Laughs.] It was such a beautiful trip. I met some incredible children. I visited some incredible entrepreneurs and learned about so many people in the country.
ROBACH: Beyonce wants the world to see her and know her as a normal mom.