President Trump on Saturday lashed out at a pair of “nasty lightweight” Washington Post reporters and suggested they be barred from White House grounds over their critical coverage of the Trump administration.
Trump went after The Post’s Philip Rucker and Ashley Parker in an early morning tweet, suggesting that they “shouldn’t even be allowed on the grounds of the White House because their reporting is so DISGUSTING & FAKE.”
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 attack came two days after White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham and deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley penned an op-ed in The Washington Examiner criticizing The Post for a Sept. 1 article describing “what some Trump advisers and allies characterize as a lost summer defined by self-inflicted controversies and squandered opportunities.”
The top White House officials wrote that The Post refused to cite the majority of Trump’s accomplishments from a list of 26 that was provided, specifically citing Trump’s historic meeting with Kim Jong Un in North Korea as well as his push for a trade deal with Japan as examples that the reporters did not include.
“The truth is, Trump racked up many well-documented victories that directly benefited the American people at home and abroad,” Grisham and Gidley wrote.
In a two-part tweet complaining about the Post’s coverage of the president, Grisham wrote: “The Post could have written about the president’s directive to ease all federal student loan debt for disabled veterans. They didn’t. They could have written about the first time in history a sitting United States president walked across the DMZ into North Korea. Not a chance.”
They could have written about the first time in history a sitting United States president walked across the DMZ into North Korea.
Not a chance.https://t.co/ksIxXL84c0
— Stephanie Grisham (@PressSec) September 6, 2019
However, as Mediaite notes, The Washington Post “wrote about all of the subjects that Grisham and Gidley claim were not covered. The newspaper has covered the Trump administrations’s move to end the Flores agreement, Trump reaching a trade agreement with Japan, and Trump’s move to give disabled veterans automatic forgiveness of their student loan debt.”
“Our story prominently noted the White House’s list of accomplishments and quoted a White House spokesman at length. It also reported the views of Republicans, both on the record and on background, some of whom are part of the administration and some who watch its performance from a distance,” said Shani George, The Post’s director of communications.
“Readers can judge for themselves whether our account fairly represented a variety of perspectives on the President’s summer,” she added.
Trump’s attack prompted immediate pushback from a number of journalists:
My colleagues @AshleyRParker and @PhilipRucker are careful and thorough journalists, not to mention delightful people.
Support their work by subscribing to The Washington Post: https://t.co/sxfauS0GRL https://t.co/hpM3DoEcIC
— Carlos Lozada (@CarlosLozadaWP) September 7, 2019
— Josh Dawsey (@jdawsey1) September 7, 2019
I hope my friends @PhilipRucker and @AshleyRParker are polishing their well-deserved Pulitzer Prizes and having a great weekend, because they’re awesome people. But they’re probably working, because they’re pros and that’s just what they do.
— Kimberly Atkins (@KimberlyEAtkins) September 7, 2019
— Robert Costa (@costareports) September 7, 2019
— Hadas Gold (@Hadas_Gold) September 7, 2019
No, Mr. President. They are two of the most well-sourced, honest and straight-forward reporters in the business. And they happen to be fantastic people, too. Your personal attacks on them (and other reporters) are completely misplaced, beneath your office and simply wrong.
— Michael D. Shear (@shearm) September 7, 2019