Donald Trump spokeswoman Katrina Pierson defended the campaign’s repeated decisions to deny reporters access to events if they write negative articles on the GOP frontrunner.
Pierson appeared on The Kelly File and was asked about the campaign’s policy with regard to the media, after Politico reported that its reporter Ben Schreckinger, who had covered the campaign for the last six months, was denied access to Trump’s speech and press conference in Florida Tuesday evening after his less than flattering article on campaign manager Corey Lewandowski was published earlier in the day:
Kelly: Is this what we’re going to see under a Trump presidency? Denial to reporters of access to cover him if they write something that is negative about him or his lieutenants?
Pierson: If you have a reporter that is not really reporting, just doing constant hit pieces for no reason, then that’s something we need to look at. We have a lot of reporters who essentially have just been glorified bloggers who aren’t really interested in covering the campaign or the race for that matter, they’re just out there trying to start trouble.
Kelly blew that argument out of the water when she pointed out that this wasn’t the first time the campaign has denied reporters access, citing Fusion, Univision, Huffington Post and the Des Moines Register as examples of news organizations—not bloggers—that have also faced the same fate as Schreckinger for much the same reason—they dared to criticize the Trump campaign. Kelly then reminded Pierson that there is something called the First Amendment, there’s freedom of the press, and asked if Trump understands that “you don’t get to snuff that out when you’re the President of the United States.”
Pierson tried to paper over the entire mess by saying that Trump often greets all members of the press in the spin room. But it’s clear that he doesn’t tolerate negative press, and as the frontrunner, he feels like he doesn’t have to. First Amendment or no.