Donald Trump's views pose a "tremendous danger" to America while the presidential candidate has been given a "free ride" by the media, The Huffington Post's co-founder and president told CNBC.
Speaking from the Digital-Life-Design conference in Munich on Tuesday, Arianna Huffington explained why her news organization singled out Trump's Republican presidential campaign, first by only ranking news about the candidate beside articles on the Kardashians and The Bachelorette.
"We have decided we won't report on Trump's campaign as part of The Huffington Post's political coverage," the Huffington Post's editorial director and Washington bureau chief wrote in July. "Instead, we will cover his campaign as part of our Entertainment section. Our reason is simple: Trump's campaign is a sideshow. We won't take the bait," the statement read.
Trump took to Twitter to insult Arianna Huffington personally in the wake of the news, going so far as to bring up her ex-husband's sexuality. Meanwhile his official Facebook page lashed out at the decision by calling the Huffington Post a "clown show...pretending to be a legitimate news source."
The Huffington Post's tack only changed when in December Trump controversially said he wouldn't allow Muslims into the U.S. if he were elected president.
"That is a statement of such tremendous danger for the country that really goes against all that America stands for," she told CNBC.
"That's when we started covering them in way that constantly reminds the public of what a danger it is," Huffington explained.
Huffington subsequently penned a post last month, saying that while an editorial decision was made to move Trump coverage out of the entertainment section, their articles would "constantly remind the public what he stands for," citing a number of his comments as misogynistic, racist, xenophobic and examples of bullying.
"I believe the media has given him a free ride. In many ways they have given him an enormous amount of attention, and they have not really focused on how destructive what he's proposing is," Huffington told CNBC.
She stressed that the decision wasn't a matter of Democratic or Republican politics, though.
"Wherever you are in the spectrum, on the right or on the left, Donald Trump represents a huge departure from American values," she said.
"And the American media and the world's media need to remind everyone of that fact instead of covering him as though he's a conventional candidate," Huffington said.