“These people shouting questions are the worst,” Trump has said, according to an administration official. “Why do we have them in here?”
The publisher of the New York Times said Sunday that he recently warned President Trump that his attacks on journalists, including labeling them as the “enemy of the people,” are contributing to a rise in threats and could lead to violence.
Trump revealed Sunday that he met at the White House with publisher A.G. Sulzberger and said they discussed “the vast amounts of Fake News.” The president said he explained to Sulzberger why he was increasingly characterizing journalists as the “enemy of the people.”
.. Sulzberger said in a lengthy statement, based on his and Bennet’s notes, that he agreed to the meeting with Trump “to raise concerns about the president’s deeply troubling anti-press rhetoric.”
“I told the president directly that I thought that his language was not just divisive but increasingly dangerous,” Sulzberger said. “I told him that although the phrase ‘fake news’ is untrue and harmful, I am far more concerned about his labeling journalists ‘the enemy of the people.’ I warned that this inflammatory language is contributing to a rise in threats against journalists and will lead to violence.”
.. “I repeatedly stressed that this is particularly true abroad, where the president’s rhetoric is being used by some regimes to justify sweeping crackdowns on journalists. I warned that it was putting lives at risk, that it was undermining the democratic ideals of our nation, and that it was eroding one of our country’s greatest exports: a commitment to free speech and a free press.”
.. I made clear repeatedly that I was not asking for him to soften his attacks on The Times if he felt our coverage was unfair. Instead, I implored him to reconsider his broader attacks on journalism, which I believe are dangerous and harmful to our country.”
.. he has long had a particular fascination with his coverage in the Times, dating to his many years of struggles to win the respect of Manhattan’s elite.
.. At various moments throughout his presidency, Trump has sought to punish journalists for the way they ask him questions, directing White House staff to bar those reporters from covering official events or to revoke their press credentials, The Washington Post reported this past week.