On Friday morning, President Donald Trump unloaded on reporters for asking “stupid questions,” their lack of intelligence, and their overall “nasty” behavior.
During a media gaggle outside the White House, CNN reporter Abby Phillip asked the president if he wants Matthew Whitaker, named acting attorney general, to “rein in” Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who’s overseeing the investigation into so-called “Russian collusion.”
Trump was, uh, direct. “What a stupid question that is. What a stupid question,” he emphasized. “But I watch you a lot; you ask a lot of stupid questions.”
President Trump: "What a stupid question that is." pic.twitter.com/W0xR292vfC
— CSPAN (@cspan) November 9, 2018
Next up was the one and only Jim Acosta of CNN, a man who’s never seen a camera he didn’t like.
“I think Jim Acosta is a very unprofessional man. He does this with everybody. He gets paid to do that. He gets paid to burst in. He’s a very unprofessional guy. Whether it was me or [former President] Ronald Reagan or anybody else, he would have done the same this,” slammed Trump.
“Look, I don’t think he’s a smart person, but he’s got a loud voice,” he added.
Acosta was not present at the gaggle, though. On Wednesday, the Trump administration suspended Acosta’s press credentials after he refused to give up the mic, physically pushing off a young female aide who, doing her job, was trying to grab the mic from him after he asked three questions.
“President Trump believes in a free press and expects and welcomes tough questions of him and his Administration. We will, however, never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young woman just trying to do her job as a White House intern,” explained White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders via Twitter. “The fact that CNN is proud of the way their employee behaved is not only disgusting, it‘s an example of their outrageous disregard for everyone, including young women, who work in this Administration. As a result of today’s incident, the White House is suspending the hard pass of the reporter involved until further notice.”
Addressing a question about suspending press credentials for other reporters, Trump did not rule out the idea. “As far as I’m concerned, I haven’t made that decision. But it could be others also,” he said.
“When you’re in the White House — this is a very sacred place to me, this is very special place — you have to treat the White House with respect; you have to treat the presidency with respect,” Trump noted.
Next on the docket was American Urban Radio Networks reporter April Ryan — a “loser,” according to the president.
After comparing her to Acosta, Trump said, “You talk about somebody that’s a loser? She doesn’t know what the hell she’s doing.”
“She’s very nasty, and she shouldn’t be,” he added. “You’ve got to treat the White House and the presidency with respect.
Amid a week of combative exchanges with reporters Jim Acosta, April Ryan and others, Pres. Trump says, "You have to treat the White House with respect. You have to treat the presidency with respect." https://t.co/yhJ3QFg9C3 pic.twitter.com/DWXlFpbgMz
— ABC News (@ABC) November 9, 2018