Everyday when my husband comes home for lunch we watch a little news and talk about the events. Today, we happened to turn on MSNBC to catch the tail end of President-Elect Trump’s press conference.
Seeing that today was the first press conference Trump has given since the election, I couldn’t help but to think that he was using a public relations tactic of controlling the story.
I say this because last night, President Obama gave his farewell speech to the nation, and I believe that Trump decided to combat the good press that President Obama was getting all morning with his own press conference. Also, I couldn’t help but to notice that Vice-President-Elect Mike Pence has been busy on the Hill today, visiting with Democrats and talking to the press about the impending Obamacare repeal proposal, which is another way to turn the focus off President Obama (the past) and turn it towards the future.
When you put all of the puzzle pieces together, how else could you explain the timing of Trumps press conference? Especially since despite many promises to hold press conferences in the past, Trump has let days and weeks slip by without making good.
After the end of the speech, the usual political operatives and journalists came on the air to discuss Trump’s speech.
My absolute favorite quote of the day, came from David Ignatius from the Washington Post who said that journalism and reporting is now a
Ignatius’ comment was in response to Trump’s accusations that CNN is “fake news” and calling CNN reporter Jim Acosta “rude”.
There are times in the past when pretty much every president has had a run in with the press, even dating as far back as George Washington, but somehow Trump’s run-ins with the press and his very public disdain for nearly all journalists seem different to us.
That’s because we generally suffer from short-term memory about these things. We live in the here and now, and right now we’re living through a period of time when
- people have developed a general sense of distrust of the press.
- “fake news” is all around us and sometimes even the experts have a hard time discerning the real from the not-so-real.
- we have a president-to-be who is daily, and sometimes hourly, tweeting about how much he hates the press and anyone who says anything he disagrees with.
Yes, Mr. Ignatius, I believe you are right. Journalism is a combat sport right now, but perhaps it always was.