Accuracy in Media

BuzzFeed reporter Darren Sands published an undisputed charge by Stacey Abrams, the Democratic gubernatorial candidate in Georgia, that President Trump does not believe in freedom of the press.

In his article, “Stacey Abrams Isn’t Going On The Attack Against Republicans Or Trump,” Sands showed no evidence that Trump was restricting freedom of the press and didn’t mention former President Barack Obama’s anti-press track record.

“Insofar as defending the press can be considered a critique of Trump, [Abrams] said that it’s ‘deeply, deeply troubling that we live in age where elected leaders and those who work for them are willing to cast aside more than two centuries of progress made in protecting the freedom of the press,’” Sands reported.

“‘The minute we shut that down we start our slide into ignominy.’ (Abrams said she sometimes takes exception with how she’s covered, but she’d ‘never participate’ in demonizing the First Amendment, and the reason she was at NABJ was that ‘I believe not only in the freedom of the press but I respect the press.’”)

By positioning Abrams as someone juxtaposed against Trump in support of press freedom, Sands paints Trump’s charge of media bias as something that is an unconstitutional First Amendment violation.

Sands also neglects to mention evidence, such as a previous article from this year by Julie Mason host of “The Press Pool” on SiriusXM’s POTUS channel, showing that Trump’s predecessor, Obama, had a far more tangible record against the press.

Mason, a veteran White House reporter and a former elected board member of the White House Correspondents’ Association, wrote that “Trump has proved more accessible than Obama and has not moved on threats against the industry … Obama, who campaigned on a promise to protect government whistle-blowers, made greater use of the Espionage Act to prosecute leakers and menace journalists than all other presidents combined.

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