With his presidency crumbling around him, Donald Trump has always seemed to go back to a familiar enemy to place the blame for his catastrophic failures of leadership, and his failure to successfully hide the evidence of his misdeeds. While there’s something to be said about a person who’s only sorry they got caught, that concept really takes on new meaning when you’re talking about someone in a position of authority.
Trump has talked innumerable times about revoking press credentials, and the fact is, “contentious” just isn’t a strong enough word to describe his relationship with the press. He’s banned certain reporters, he’s given White House access to right-wing outlets that are known to spread lies, and he’s even bad-mouthed the Fourth Estate while on overseas trips and during joint press conferences with foreign leaders here in the United States.
But we knew all of this was going to happen, and we knew it would only get worse as America got closer and closer to the truth. As his tweeting and denials have now reached an all-time high, a fever pitch, it’s time to look back at just how Donald Trump told America this was all going to go down.
Less than two weeks after the 2016 presidential election rocked the world, Trump called a wide variety of members of the press to Trump Tower for a meeting that most of them surmised was going to be about access and availability. Some of the biggest names in news were in attendance, including NBC’s Deborah Turness, Lester Holt, and Chuck Todd; ABC’s James Goldston, George Stephanopoulos, David Muir, and Martha Raddatz; CBS’ Norah O’Donnell, John Dickerson, Charlie Rose, Christopher Isham, and Gayle King; Fox News’ Bill Shine, Jack Abernethy, Jay Wallace, and Suzanne Scott; MSNBC’s Phil Griffin, and CNN’s Jeff Zucker and Erin Burnett.
What they got instead was a taste of what working with Trump was going to be like as a reporter whose loyalty lies with the public, rather than the President.
It turned out to be something of a bloodbath, with Trump taking shots at almost everyone in the room. He called Jeff Zucker a liar and said CNN was “a network of liars,” according to a source who spoke to the New York Post. “I hate your network, everyone at CNN is a liar, and you should be ashamed,” he said, according to the source. He called out Martha Raddatz and Katy Tur — the latter of whom eventually needed protection from Trump’s fans after he did it to her again at multiple rallies.
In short, he made no secret of the fact that he was going to be hostile to the press.
Should we be surprised, then, that he now blames the media for doing”negative” stories on his administration?
At least one of those names should look familiar to you now in a different sense: Bill Shine from Fox now works as Trump’s communications chief.
We here at DC Tribune may belong to a small outlet, but we know an ass-kisser when we see one.
Featured image via screen capture