During yet another disastrous press conference held on Thursday afternoon, President Donald Trump committed numerous attacks against the freedom of the press, attacking the legitimacy of the members of the press and silencing a Hasidic reporter who tried to ask an important question.
As he often does, Trump referred to CNN as “fake news,” and said that while the leaks being released by members of the White House are “real,” the news stories reporting them are “fake.”
Later, Trump called on a BBC reporter, but before allowing him to ask the question, he asked, “where are you from?” When the reporter said, “BBC,” Trump declared, “That’s another beauty!”
Insulted by the insinuation, the reporter curtly replied, “Good line. Impartial free and fair.”
Finally, Trump called on hasidic reporter Jake Turx, a reporter for Jewish magazine Ami, who attempted to ask the president about recent bomb threats and attacks made on Jewish cultural centers and religious buildings. Before he was able to finish his question, he was told to sit down. Trump appeared insulted by the question and declared that he was the “least antisemitic person” and “least racist person.”
The reporter then attempted to speak up to clarify his question before the President repeatedly told him, “quiet, quiet, quiet.”
Trump continued his non-answer, saying that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said to “forget it,” in reference to any question about Trump’s views on Jewish people. The president also said that he found it offensive that his views on Jewish people would ever be questioned.
What the president failed to know, because he didn’t let the reporter finish his question, was what Turx even wanted to ask.
By the direction of the question it seemed that he was asking for the president to respond on the antisemitic threats and attacks that religious centers had been facing. As he has failed to do many times before, the president missed a simple and easy opportunity to condemn the violence while reasserting his Jew-friendly stance.
Here is the transcript of that exchange:
Trump's exchange w/reporter asking about 48 bomb threats to Jewish centers: "A very insulting question." pic.twitter.com/4lJsfE2Z5h
— David Nir (@DavidNir) February 16, 2017
All in all, Trump’s press conference was a monumental disaster from the point of view of a free and fair press. The president continues to lie and mislead the American publicly while constantly acting as if it is the press who are doing wrong.
Turx asks his question at the 2:05 mark. Watch: