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Trump Threatens to Cancel Media Briefings to Ensure 'Accuracy'

His latest attack on the media came after his administration's shifting narrative on the firing of James Comey as FBI chief was questioned by the media.


Updated:May 12, 2017, 8:49 PM IST
Trump Threatens to Cancel Media Briefings to Ensure 'Accuracy'
US President Donald Trump. (File photo: Reuters)
Washington: US President Donald Trump on Friday threatened to cancel the White House press briefings and instead issue written responses to questions "for accuracy", escalating his tiff with the media that has questioned the administration's shifting stance on the FBI chief's firing.

Describing himself as a "very active president", Trump said it was becoming very difficult for his surrogates to explain things with perfect accuracy to reporters at the news conferences.

"...Maybe the best thing to do would be to cancel all future 'press briefings' and hand out written responses for the sake of accuracy???" Trump said in a series of tweets.

His latest attack on the media came after his administration's shifting narrative on the firing of James Comey as FBI chief was questioned by the media.

The president's advisers said this week that Trump fired Comey in response to a recommendation by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

Later, however, they said that Trump had planned to fire Comey regardless.

Slamming the media, Trump said, "The Fake Media is working overtime today!"

Trump's comments came after acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe directly contradicted the White House's claims that the "rank and file" agents had lost faith in Comey.

"Director Comey enjoyed broad support within the FBI and still does to this day," McCabe said yesterday during testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Trump has also strongly refuted the allegations that there was any collusion between him or his campaign with the Russians.

"Again, the story that there was collusion between the Russians and Trump campaign was fabricated by Democrats as an excuse for losing the election," he said.

"When James Clapper himself, and virtually everyone else with knowledge of the witch hunt, says there is no collusion, when does it end?" Trump asserted.

Trump also warned sacked FBI chief Comey not to "leak" details of their conversations to the media, suggesting they may have been taped.

"James Comey better hope that there are no "tapes" of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!" he said.

"China just agreed that the US will be allowed to sell beef, and other major products, into China once again. This is REAL news!" Trump said.

The suggestion to cancel briefings is not the first time the administration has threatened to limit media access.

Trump's aides had floated the idea of moving the media from the White House to the nearby Executive Office Building to accommodate media interest. However, the move was interpreted as a bid to limit media access.
| Edited by: Nakshab Khan
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