Trump vs. The Press

Trump vs. The Press

Jessie Anderson, Writer

During Donald Trump’s campaign for president, he appealed to middle America through his opposition to the press. How will his opposition trickle into his presidency, and how does that affect us?


After Obama won the Presidential election in 2008, Obama went on vacation to Hawaii with his family. He left behind the pool of reporters assigned to follow him on December 26, 2008 to take his daughters to a marine amusement park. According to, Obama largely avoided the press pool that followed him during the first six days of his 12 day stay in Hawaii.


After president-elect Donald Trump called a lid (told the press pool he would not be leaving his home for the rest of the day), he went to Club 21, a Midtown steakhouse, with his family. A Bloomberg reporter, who happened to be at the same restaurant, posted the picture of Trump on Twitter on November 16, 2016.


Some people feel that the press is being too harsh on President-elect Trump. One headline from reads: “FLASHBACK: When Obama Ditched Reporters and No One Cared.” NBC’s headline reads: “As Trump Leaves Press Behind for Steak Dinner, Incoming Admin Already Showing Lack of Transparency.”


The Politistick article expresses outrage over the perceived hypocrisy of mainstream media: “Indeed. The media once again reveals their leftist stripes and their attempts to cause problems and undermine a Republican presidency with their ridiculous, asinine, selective outrage that makes them look like the idiots they are.”


During Trump’s campaign, he openly spoke about the corruption of mainstream media. Trump sent a letter to the New York Times where he threatened to sue the newspaper for attempted defamation after an article about two women’s allegations against him was published.


According to the New York Times, they received a letter letter that “charged the article with being “libelous,” “reckless” and “defamatory,” called it a “politically-motivated effort to defeat Mr. Trump’s candidacy” and accused The Times of inadequately investigating the truth of the claims.”


During his campaign, Trump called the press “disgusting” and “dishonest.” He would not allow a reporter pool to follow him during the campaign. The Committee to Protect Journalists issued a statement saying “Donald Trump  has insulted and vilified the press and has made his opposition to the media a centerpiece of his campaign.”

During his campaign rallies, Trump denied press credentials to news outlets like Buzzfeed, Politico, and the Washington Post. While only two newspapers endorsed Trump,more than 200 newspapers supported Clinton.


After he won the election, The White House Correspondents’ Association, which coordinates press pools for the President, urged Trump to allow journalists to cover his meetings and movements.


The press pool makes sure that the people have access to eyewitness accounts, rather than having to rely on secondhand information. The press also makes sure that the President’s first comments on breaking news are sent to the people.


The President and Vice President’s every move is kept secret for their safety, so the press pool relies on White House correspondents to tell them where to be in order to cover the news. This is why the “lid” exists. The lid is when the President’s correspondents tell the press pool that the President is no longer leaving the premise that day or doing anything newsworthy.


The press pool is meant to inform the people of their President’s decisions and actions. Do you think that the press is overreacting to Donald Trump, or did they underreact to President Obama?