Anonymous sources have revealed to the New York Post that a meeting convened by President-elect Donald Trump between himself and key, leading members of the media on Monday at New York’s Trump Tower quickly turned into something “like a f*cking firing squad.”
Trump reportedly called the meeting on the premise of hosting a discussion with the nation’s leading media outlets on the groundwork for media access to Trump’s presidential administration once he takes office next January.
Instead, Trump took the opportunity granted by having a significant number of the leading faces of American news in the same place to go off on the media in punitive detail.
As an anonymous source told the New York Post of the meeting — speaking on the condition of anonymity since the meeting was off the record, “It was like a f*cking firing squad. Trump started with [CNN chief] Jeff Zucker and said ‘I hate your network, everyone at CNN is a liar and you should be ashamed.'”
Such criticism is literally almost childish, although certainly in line with the president-elect’s other behavior. (Think Twitter.)
Still, what kind of person issues blanket statements like that? “Everyone at CNN is a liar”? WTF?
Trump ended up spending the entire meeting, according to reports, lobbing similar complaints at other members of the media who had come to the meeting.
As the initial source went on to say:
‘The meeting was a total disaster. The TV execs and anchors went in there thinking they would be discussing the access they would get to the Trump administration, but instead they got a Trump-style dressing down.’
A second source described Trump’s in-meeting treatment of two other reporters, ABC’s Martha Raddatz and NBC’s Katy Tur, telling the New York Post:
‘Trump didn’t say [NBC reporter] Katy Tur by name, but talked about an NBC female correspondent who got it wrong, then he referred to a horrible network correspondent who cried when Hillary lost who hosted a debate — which was Martha Raddatz who was also in the room.’
Trump has thus continued on, via his Monday meeting, down the path of setting in place an inflammatory, confrontational tone as standard fare for communication between the Trump administration and those tasked with reporting news.
Trump started his infamous, long-running feud with the media well before now, making the outcome of this meeting hardly a surprise. He spent many campaign rallies railing against the “dishonest” media, taking his rhetoric to such dangerous points on many occasions that members of the media covering his rallies were often put in physical danger.
NBC’s Katy Tur, for example — who was specifically called out by Trump at Monday’s meeting — had to be placed under Secret Service protection while at a Trump rally after the then-presidential candidate directly called her out from the stage for her supposedly dishonest coverage of his campaign.
Following Trump’s remarks, the crowd turned against Tur to the point of sparking security intervention, with similar interventions sparked by disturbingly threatening behavior at other Trump campaign rallies directed towards the media throughout the final weeks before Election Day.
Featured Image via Drew Angerer/ Getty Images