Fox News anchor Chris Wallace told President Trump that he is viewed as a “beacon for repression around the world” because of his repeated attacks against the press.
Wallace made the statement to Trump while conducting a sit-down interview with the president that was aired on Sunday. In it, Wallace pressed Trump about his rhetoric in regard to the media, noting that most presidents haven’t like the coverage of their administrations.
“No president has liked his press coverage … Nobody called it the enemy of the American people,” Wallace said.
“The fake news is the enemy — it’s fake, it’s phony,” Trump replied, before claiming that he doesn’t mind negative press coverage if he gets something wrong.
But Wallace pushed Trump on the topic, saying that “leaders in authoritarian countries like Russia, China, Venezuela, now repress the media using your words.”
After Trump said he can’t speak for other countries, Wallace stated that “you’re seen around the world as a beacon for repression.”
Trump continued to double down, saying that the coverage of him was “largely phony.”
Trump has repeatedly gone after the press during his presidency, going so far as to call them the “enemy of the people.” He insisted on Sunday that when he calls the media the “enemy of the people,” he is referring to the “fake news media.”
The airing of his interview with Wallace came only days after a judge ruled that the White House must reinstate CNN chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta’s press pass.
The administration had revoked Acosta’s credentials after he got in a heated exchange with Trump during a press conference.
U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly said on Friday that the White House violated Acosta’s Fifth Amendment rights to due process by pulling Acosta’s pass.
Trump stated to Wallace that the White House can pull Acosta’s pass again if he “misbehaves” at a future press conference.
“What they said though is that we have to create rules and regulations for conduct, etc., etc. We’re doing that, were going to write them up right now,” Trump said. “It’s not a big deal. And if he misbehaves, we’ll throw him out or we’ll stop the news conference.”
BY JUSTIN WISE – 11/18/18