President Trump took to Twitter on Saturday to call for two Washington Post reporters to be banned from covering the news at the White House.
In a tweet, Trump said White House Bureau Chief Philip Rucker and Pulitzer Prize-winning White House reporter Ashley Parker should not be allowed back “because their reporting is so disgusting and fake.”
Trump tweeted: “The Washington Post’s @PhilipRucker (Mr. Off the Record) & @AshleyRParker, two nasty lightweight reporters, shouldn’t even be allowed on the grounds of the White House because their reporting is so DISGUSTING & FAKE. Also, add the appointment of MANY Federal Judges this Summer!”
The Washington Post’s @PhilipRucker (Mr. Off the Record) & @AshleyRParker, two nasty lightweight reporters, shouldn’t even be allowed on the grounds of the White House because their reporting is so DISGUSTING & FAKE. Also, add the appointment of MANY Federal Judges this Summer! https://t.co/7d33tzKxXq
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 7, 2019
Trump’s “off-the-record” comment is a clear reference to the recent resignation of Trump’s personal assistant who disclosed personal details about the Trump family to Rucker in an off-the-record setting.
The tweet linked to an op-ed by White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham and Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley rebutting a Washington Post story published earlier this week that highlighted the president’s missteps amid the administration’s policy stumbles over the summer. But the White House op-ed inaccurately claimed the Washington Post didn’t report stories that it actually did cover.
The White House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment on Trump’s tweet.
In a statement, Washington Post executive editor Marty Baron said “we stand fully behind” Rucker and Parker, adding, “The president’s statement fits into a pattern of seeking to denigrate and intimidate the press. It’s unwarranted and dangerous, and it represents a threat to the free press in this country.”
Both Rucker and Parker have highlighted positive reactions to their story on social media since its publication. Washington Post reporters rallied to their colleagues’ defense Saturday following the president’s tweet.
The Trump administration’s feud with the Washington Post was first egged on by a conflict between the president’s son, Eric Trump, and Washington Post reporter David Farenthold, Politico reports.
According to the report, the reporter sought inquiry from a new hire of the Trump Organization, requesting information on the company.
An email Eric Trump shared allegedly from Farenthold showed the reporter extending an invitation for anonymous information and making himself available through cryptic messages to the new hire.
“These are the tactics used by the @WashingtonPost. @JeffBezos – you should be very proud…” Eric Trump tweeted alongside the email.
— Eric Trump (@EricTrump) September 6, 2019