At a West Wing briefing, a reporter from The Hill ceded the floor to an NBC correspondent as Sarah Huckabee Sanders tried to move things along.
COMMENTARY BY JOE FERULLO
Joe Ferullo: Despite a nonstop string of criticisms over why Biden waited 65 days before holding his first news conference, the real stress was not on the president — a 50-year veteran of politics who is accustomed to dealing with the media. No, the genuine drama came from the press corps itself — and the new crop of White House television news correspondents. They face a frightening combination of challenges — to their careers and to the economic health of the businesses they represent.
Three reporters have tested positive for COVID-19 in recent days while covering a White House described as lax, at best, in following basic safety advice like wearing masks. Discomfort only increased Monday with news that press secretary Kayleigh McEnany had tested positive. Above, a member of the cleaning staff sprays The James Brady Briefing Room of the White House on Oct. 5.
The Secret Service abruptly called for reporters to leave the White House grounds Monday night, CNN reported. Broadcasting from Lafayette Square in front of the White House, CNN’s Kaitlan Collins called the move “incredibly unusual,” telling CNN’s Anderson Cooper “I don’t think we’ve ever been asked to actually physically leave the White House at a time like that.”
President Donald Trump spent the Q&A portion of his daily coronavirus press briefing on Monday by attacking reporters not for their recent stories but for the way that they are asking their questions. ““You should say, ‘Congratulations, great job,’ instead of being so horrid in the way you ask a question,” he told Fox News’ Kristin Fisher, who had asked about testing shortages.
The White House Correspondents’ Association said that a member of the press corps has a suspected case of the coronavirus and is advising journalists and others who were at the White House on a series of dates over the past two weeks to take precautions. “We have been informed that one of our colleagues has a suspected case of COVID-19,” WHCA President Jonathan Karl wrote in an email to members.
The Washington Post’s Dana Milbank: “After covering four presidents, I received an email informing me that Trump’s press office had revoked my White House credential. I’m not the only one. I was part of a mass purge of ‘hard pass’ holders after the White House implemented a new standard that designated as unqualified almost the entire White House press corps, including all seven of The Post’s White House correspondents.
The “daily” White House press briefing is a thing of the past. The White House has only held three on-camera briefings in the past 30 days, according to the administration’s own records on WhiteHouse.gov.
The president’s decision to attend the Gridiron Club dinner seems conciliatory, though bitter feelings remain on both sides.
COMMENTARY BY HOWARD KURTZ
Fox News analyst Howard Kurtz argues that press misjudgment has upended coverage ofÃ¢â‚¬Â¯the White House and boosted the president’s agenda in this exclusive excerpt from his new book, Media Madness.
No doubt anticipating more blow-back in his general direction at Sundays sure-to-be-highly-charged Golden Globe Awards, President Donald Trump tweeted Tuesday evening that, the day after the awards ceremony, he will announce winners of his new “MOST DISHONEST & CORRUPT MEDIA AWARDS OF THE YEAR.” All-caps are his. Trump’s ceremony is set for 5 PM, he tweeted, presumably meaning Eastern Time.
NEW YORK (AP) — CNN’s Jim Acosta says he was warned by the White House press secretary Sarah Sanders not to ask a question during President Donald Trump’s bill signing ceremony on Tuesday, further evidence of sour relations between the network and administration. Acosta said Sanders told him that if he asked Trump a question, […]
The president tweeted six attacks on what he calls “fake news” over the weekend, saying the “out of control” media puts out purposely false and defamatory stories. That led to a contentious exchange at Monday’s White House press briefing between press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and CNN’s Jim Acosta.
In the wake of CNN’s decision to boycott the White House Christmas party, other journalists express mixed feelings.
The president styles himself a fighter, but when it comes to television, he prefers allies who help mold his image like The Apprentice once did. Above, Trump is interviewed by Mike Huckabee.
Lessons from nine months in the press briefing room. Trump and his team understand that for the political press, the only thing that matters is what’s happening right now, not yesterday. And whether through his tweets or his surrogates in the briefing room, the president has been largely able to bait reporters into playing his game, because he knows what makes them tick.
COMMENTARY BY MARGARET SULLIVAN
In the year since Donald Trump was elected president, the national news media has congratulated itself on a new golden age of accountability journalism. And it’s true in many ways. The scoops have been relentless, the digging intense, the results important. But in another crucial way, the reality-based press has failed. Too often, it has succumbed to the chaos of covering Trump, who lies and blusters and distracts at every turn.
COMMENTARY BY GARY ABERNATHY
Republicans and conservatives have grumbled about unfair coverage from the “mainstream media” for decades. But the Trump era has brought us to a new plateau, one where the media has moved from adversarial to oppositional. Many observers, on both right and left, have come to see the media as the leader of the resistance. If you care about journalism, it’s a disturbing trend.
President Trump accused the media of making up a majority of stories about his administration without providing evidence to back up his claim.
Donald Trump’s Twitter feed has become a news service for political junkies. It’s also raised a tangle of new ethical and legal questions for reporters covering the White House.
Americans are increasingly confident in the news media and less so in President Donald Trump’s administration after a tumultuous year in U.S. politics that tested the public’s trust in both institutions, according to a Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll released Tuesday. The poll of more than 14,300 people found that the percentage of adults who said they had a “great deal” or “some” confidence in the press rose to 48% in September from 39% last November. Earlier this year, Trump branded the entire industry as the “enemy of the American people.”
During the early days of the administration, similar storylines covered across outlets, but types of sources heard from and the assessments of Trump’s actions differed.
How the administration has changed the game between investigative reporters and their government sources.
Members of the media blasted back at President Trump on Wednesday after he railed against the press at a rally and called journalists “dishonest people” who “don’t like our country.” Acrimony between the Trump White House and the media has been escalating for months, but the latest round of attacks and counterattacks was notable for its bare-knuckle ferocity.
At his rally in Phoenix Tuesday evening, President Trump defended his stance on the racially charged violence in Charlottesville, Va., and accused the “dishonest media” of distorting his words. (AP photo)
President Trump blasted the news media ahead of his return to Washington on Sunday after a 17-day working vacation. “Heading back to Washington after working hard and watching some of the worst and most dishonest Fake News reporting I have ever seen!” the president said.
COMMENTARY BY PAUL FARHI
How the White House has tried to beat the press during Trump’s first six months in office. The president’s forays into press criticism have become voluminous. Fortunately, they’re as easy to track as ABC.
Spicer’s decision appears to be linked to the appointment of a new White House communications director, New York financier Anthony Scaramucci. People with knowledge of the decision spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the personnel matter publicly.
Following rules set by the White House, news networks only began airing press secretary Sean Spicer’s Q&A until after it was done. With still pictures of Spicer onscreen as he talked off-camera, it didn’t make for gripping television. Fox News Channel and MSNBC both broke away to other stories before the session was finished. The last on-camera White House briefing was on June 29.
The latest: the network is defending itself against a #CNNBlackmail social media campaign.
The escalating conflict between the president and the media has diverted attention not just from Trump’s failures but his claimed successes as well.
A string of high-profile corrections and retractions by major news organizations on stories about President Trump or his allies have fueled more allegations of bias in the mainstream press.
By tweeting a doctored video clip of himself beating a figure representing the network, President Trump drew bipartisan rebukes from lawmakers. Historians suggested his social-media attacks are lowering the bar for what is considered appropriate presidential decorum in fighting perceived media enemies.
Donald Trump and his allies believe he’s gained a tactical advantage in his war with the media. As he escalates his attacks on the “failing media,” Trump and his allies are increasingly convinced that recent evidence, including the retracted CNN piece on an aspect of the Russia investigations, will prove to skeptical voters that the mainstream media has a vendetta against the administration.
CNN host Don Lemon suggested this week that the White House press corps defy the White House camera ban, and turn on their cameras during the daily briefings. Reporters could certainly do that, but the White House would be within its rights to kick them out because reporters probably don’t have a First Amendment right to film or even attend the briefings, experts say.
Trump’s relations with the media — never strong to begin with — have taken another sour turn with dwindling opportunities for on-camera engagement with the president’s representatives. The White House has appeared to adopt a communications strategy of dealing primarily with its base of supporters, as witnessed by Trump’s two interviews in the past week with Fox News Channel’s morning show, Fox & Friends.