Donald Trump’s instinct to shut down the press is well-documented. Finally, the major media outlets are ganging up on Mr. Trump in an effort to force him to quit his censorship instinct. First, it’s only fair to admit that beating up on the media is a time-tested tactic in the GOP. It’s one thing to beat up on the media for asking gotcha questions. It’s another thing, though, to limit the press’s access to public events. Mr. Trump’s thin skin caused him to drop the Des Moines Register’s press credentials to one of his events because their editorial board wrote that he should drop out of the race because of his disgusting comments that questioned John McCain’s patriotism.
Mr. Trump has gotten excessive amounts of TV access thus far. According to the Washington Post’s article, that’s about to change. The major media outlets have gotten tired of Cory Lewandowski, Trump’s campaign manager, herding reporters into press pens before, during and after Mr. Trump’s events. Constitution-loving conservatives should think twice before voting for a candidate who thinks the media shouldn’t have access to people before and after public campaign events. That’s what Mr. Trump’s campaign manager is attempting to do. Whether Mr. Lewandowski is limiting access on Mr. Trump’s orders or whether he’s doing it on his own is irrelevant.
The First Amendment prohibits people from covering public political events. That’s what this describes:
According to people at multiple networks, senior managers from the five leading TV news networks — ABC News, CBS News, CNN, Fox and NBC News — will discuss their response in an effort to push back against what they deem harsh and restrictive behavior by Trump’s managers, including his top aide, campaign manager Corey Lewandowski.
Lewandowski threatened to pull the press credentials of a CNN reporter, Noah Gray, last week after Gray sought to leave the press pen during a Trump campaign appearance in Worcester, Mass. Gray, an “embed” for the network who has covered Trump for months, recorded Lewandowski’s threat to “blacklist” him and posted it online.
Reporters clashed again with Lewandowski and Trump press secretary Hope Hicks on Friday at an event in Spartanburg, S.C. When the journalists tried to interview voters before Trump’s speech, they were ordered to return to the press pen, under threat of losing their credentials. They later defied an order by Hicks to remain in the press area, a small area bordered by bicycle rack-like barriers, while Trump greeted supporters on a rope line afterward.
These major news outlets should read the Trump campaign the riot act. He needs them far more than they need him. Without them giving him virtual unlimited access, Trump’s campaign would be in the toilet by now.
Let’s ask ourselves if we really want a president that prevents a newspaper’s or a TV network’s correspondents because their editorial page wrote a negative editorial. Mr. Trump spent a portion of Monday whining that the RNC wasn’t treating him fairly.
It’s only fair that the networks read him the riot act when he limited their access to the crowds before and after his public events.