On Wednesday morning president-elect Donald Trump held his first press conference in 160 days, and it quickly degraded into a belligerent Trump dodging questions and attacking reporters. Most notably, he refused to take a question from CNN reporter Jim Acosta because he now deems CNN “fake news.” This morning Acosta spoke with CNN’s Anderson Cooper about the incident, and delivered powerful words about the troubling incident (video below):
ANDERSON COOPER: Jim Acosta, you tried to ask a question at the press conference to president-elect Trump. He refused to take questions, saying you’re from “fake news.” What did Sean Spicer say to you after that?
JIM ACOSTA: Well, he came up to me and said that what I did was crossing the line and was inappropriate. We should repeat that during that news conference when I was trying to ask that question, Spicer threatened to throw me out of the press conference if I kept persisting. But speaking of Sean Spicer, we should report that on a conference call this morning, he was asked whether Donald Trump was going to sue over these stories for libel and Sean Spicer told reporters that the president-elect would like to move on.
I think that there’s something worse than fake news and that’s the denial of real news and beyond that, Anderson, something that might be worse than that is they’re just not in command of the facts at this point. When you listen to Kelleyanne Conway go sort of all over the place on this, they’re just not in command of the facts. But I will tell you that this has been a pattern for the Trump campaign and now the Trump transition, where they don’t like the news that’s being reported and they go after the messenger and I think that’s just going to continue.
Acosta’s analysis of his encounter with Trump is spot on. Since being accosted at the press conference, Republicans have even called for Acosta to be fired. For daring to request a question, apparently, that might be unflattering for Trump. The Trump team has been working to shore up its failing public image with desperate attempts to discredit and delegitimize negative press coverage. They are emulating the great propagandists of fascist regimes who control “facts” in order to hide the damning truth from their citizens. Unfortunately, as Acosta opines, this pattern is probably “just going to continue.”
Marisa completed her undergraduate degree in 2013 at the University of Wisconsin with a double major in creative writing and media studies. She is an advocate of progressive policies and focuses her interests on gender equality and preventing sexual and domestic violence.