President Trump on Wednesday raised the prospect of taking away credentials from news media outlets that he believes are reporting negatively on his administration, claiming that the “Fake News” is “working overtime” against him, reports the Washington Post. “Why do we work so hard in working with the media when it is corrupt?” Trump tweeted. “Take away credentials?” Trump has long been critical of the news media, but taking away the credentials of White House reporters who cover him would take his animus to a new level.
As is often the case, his tweet likely was touched off by his favorite TV show. The Twitter missive closely followed a “Fox & Friends” discussion about a Media Research Center study suggesting that 91 percent of network news stories about him are negative. During his presidential bid, Trump’s campaign temporarily banned several news organizations from his rallies, including The Washington Post, citing dissatisfaction with the coverage. If Trump were to carry through with his threat now that he’s president, it would be at odds with a pledge he made during a November 2015 interview with Time magazine. Trump was asked: “Could you assure that even news outlets that you feel are being very unfair to you will continue to have their credentials at the White House if you’re elected President?” Trump responded: “Oh yeah, I would do that. It doesn’t mean I’d be nice to them. I tend to do what I do. If people aren’t treating me right, I don’t treat them right.”