A candidate like no other in American history, Donald Trump is waging war on the media.
Republican presidential hopeful and front-runner Donald Trump has been waging a deliberate focused war against the media from the outset of his campaign, but things seem to be escalating in recent weeks.
Last Tuesday Trump’s campaign staff members blocked reporters from leaving their barricaded work area, designated as “the pen” by Donald Trump’s campaign. The Washington Post reports that:
After CNN reporter Noah Gray left “the pen” to document a group of protesters who unveiled a sign reading “Migrant lives matter,” Trump’s campaign manager Corey Lewandowski turned to campaign spokeswoman Hope Hicks and said: “Hey: Tell Noah, get back in the pen or he’s f—— blacklisted,” according to a recording of the incident.
Then, last Thursday, an aid to Trump barred Buzzfeed White House reporter Evan McMorris-Santoro from a campaign event in Newton, Iowa. McMorris-Santoro was not only barred from the event as a member of the press, he was barred from entering as a private citizen. In a series of tweets, he explained:
Welp, I’m adding “barred from Donald Trump town hall in Newton Iowa” to the ol list of career accomplishments. I asked the Trump camp for credentials several days ago. Never heard back. So I came out to Iowa to check things out. At press table, Trump aide looked at my WH and Hill creds, called Trump camp to see if I could be let in. 10 min later, the answer: no. I asked if I could just go in as a citizen (I had been checked out by the secret sve already) and was told no again. I was not to enter. And so I left. Now I’m in Newton IA hanging out. Summary: barred from a Trump event is off the bucket list.
According to The Washington Post, the Trump campaign has been actively barring other media outlets as well:
The campaign has also declined to give credentials to reporters from news organizations it has deemed unfriendly. The list includes BuzzFeed, the Huffington Post, Fusion, Univision and the Des Moines Register, the largest paper in the state holding the nation’s first caucus. The latter says it has been kept out of Trump’s events as a result of an editorial the paper published in July urging Trump to withdraw from the race.
There are also wide-spread accusations of reporters being threatened by the Trump campaign. As The Washington Post reports, reporters “clashed” with Trump’s campaign manager, Lewandowski, and Trump press secretary Hope Hicks last Friday at a campaign event in Spartanburg, N.C. The reporters claim they were ordered back to the “press pen” under threat of losing their press credentials after attempting to interview voters.
There is also the incident this past August when Trump had news anchor Jorge Ramos, who works for Univision and Fusion, thrown out of a campaign event. ABC News reports that Trump repeatedly told Ramos to “sit down” after he tried to ask the candidate about immigration during the event in Dubuque, Iowa.
Trump was heard telling Ramos: “You haven’t been called…go back to Univision” moments before he was led out of the event by security.
The list goes on and on….
On the plus side, there has been some limited push-back against Trump’s tyranny on the part of some in the media.
- The Huffington Post has declared Trump’s candidacy a “sideshow,” announcing they would be relegating coverage of Donald Trump to the Entertainment section of the site – along with stories about the Kardashians and The Bachelorette.
- Sick of the seemingly never-ending Trump-a-thon, CNN staffers complained about the excessive coverage of Donald Trump as well as CNN President Jeff Zucker’s directive to cover the presidential candidate ad nauseum.
- Legendary newscaster Tom Brokaw told attendees at the National Book Festival in Washington, D.C. that he would have to “call in sick” if he had to lead with Donald Trump every night.
- It has gotten so bad recently that representatives from ABC News, CBS News, CNN, Fox and NBC News met earlier this week “to hash out demands about access to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign after Trump officials last week threatened to ‘blacklist’ reporters.