President Donald Trump attacked The Washington Post on Wednesday for a story that was first reported in The New York Times.
During a combative Oval Office pool spray, Trump was asked about a Times report that claimed he wanted a trench filled with alligators along the U.S. border.
Trump came unglued at the mention of the story.
“My comms people came to me and they said, sir, there’s a book or something being written. It’s written by Washington Post people so you know it’s inaccurate. You know it’s probably a fraud,” Trump opined.
The book, however, was written by two reporters from The New York Times. Details of the book were also first published by the Times.
“So two reporters of The Washington Post — and they said, President Trump started screaming, ranting and raving that on the southern border where we are right now building a tremendous wall,” Trump said in his Oval Office screed on Wednesday. “That I wanted a wall that I wanted a mote, a mote, and in the mote I wanted alligators and snakes and I wanted the wall to be a fence and I wanted it to be electrified and I wanted sharp spikes at the top so if anyone gets it, it goes piercing through their skin is somewhat the way they said it. Skin piercing spikes.”
“But I want that whole wall to be electrocuted,” he complained of the reporting. “I said what book? They said Washington Post. I said well obviously it’s fake because almost everything the Washington Post does is fake. It’s a fake newspaper. It’s owned by a rich guy for the purposes of giving him power in Washington.”
Trump insisted that he “never said” what was published in the book, which he cooperated with.
“It was corrupt reporting, okay? I don’t even use fake anymore,” the president remarked. “I call the fake news now corrupt news because fake isn’t tough enough. I’m the one that came up with the term. I’m very proud of it. But I think I’m going to switch it largely to corrupt news because the media in this country — not everybody.”
“We have some great reporters, some great journalists. But much of it is corrupt. You have corrupt media in this country. It truly is the enemy of the people. Thank you very much. Thank you,” he said, concluding the gaggle.
Following the interview, CNN host John King reminded his audience that Trump “repeatedly lies.”
“One of the challenges of covering this statement is the president constantly and repeatedly lies including in that session you just saw right there,” King lamented. “At the end he was attacking two very professional New York Times reporters who just wrote a very good book on immigration. The president questioning that. He cooperated with that book. He sat down with an interview with the two reporters. Now he’s trashing that book.”