It’s clear that the Trump administration is less concerned with being a good administration than it is with appearing like it’s a good administration on TV. But Trump doesn’t generally get a lot of positive press, largely thanks to his tendency to lash out whenever they say something even mildly critical of him. So he’s trying to bolster the ratings of those networks that are supporting him any way he can, and he may actually be forcing people to watch.
Buzzfeed was sent an email from a Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research staffer, who was one of several who noticed agency TVs were suddenly tuned to Fox News instead of CNN. Staffers politely objected and asked that the TVs be tuned back to CNN, if for no other reason than it’s more entertaining to watch Don Lemon get huffy and were told that it was out of the management’s hands. The administration, it turns out, had ordered all TVs tuned to Fox, and Buzzfeed posted screencapped evidence.
Whether this is true of other government televisions is unclear, and apparently somebody decided it was better to have a blank screen than Fox, as TVs were later reported as turned off. The FDA also denied the allegations (both to Buzzfeed and Talking Points Memo), but really, the sad thing is that it’s credible in the first place.