Trump Unwilling to Meet With Iran With ‘No Conditions,’ Contradicting Pompeo, Mnuchin and Himself

President Donald Trump said it was “fake news” to say he was willing to meet with Iran with “no conditions” – contradicting both his senior officials and himself.

Earlier this week, both Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin said Trump was willing to sit down with the Iranian president with “no conditions” or “no preconditions.”

“As of now, there is no plan for the president to meet with him, although the president has said that he is prepared to meet with no conditions,” Mnuchin told CNBC.

“He is prepared to meet with no preconditions,” Pompeo said earlier this week about Trump potentially meeting Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at a U.N. summit.

Trump appeared to be disputing these comments made by Mnuchin and Pompeo … but Trump himself has also said he would meet Rouhani with “no preconditions.”

“I’m ready to meet anytime they want to … no preconditions, if they want to meet, I’ll meet,” Trump said in July 2018.

[Mediaite]

Trump Encourages New ‘Activist’ AT&T Investor to Stop ‘Fake News Emanating’ From CNN

President Donald Trump lauded the news that an activist hedge fund has a multi-billion dollar stake in AT&T — and called for them to “put a stop to all of the Fake News” presented by CNN and its anchors.

In a pair of — at best, ethically questionable — tweets Monday morning, the president raged against CNN, following news of Elliott Management disclosing a $3.2 billion stake in communications giant AT&T, which owns CNN.

“Great news that an activist investor is now involved with AT&T,” Trump wrote. “As the owner of VERY LOW RATINGS @CNN, perhaps they will now put a stop to all of the Fake News emanating from its non-credible “anchors.” Also, I hear that, because of its bad ratings, it is losing a fortune … But most importantly, @CNN is bad for the USA. Their International Division spews bad information & Fake News all over the globe. This is why foreign leaders are always asking me, “Why does the Media hate the U.S. sooo much?” It is a fraudulent shame, & all comes from the top!”

As flagged by Matthew Gertz of Media Matters, Mornings With Maria on Fox Business covered the AT&T news approximately 30 minutes before Trump’s tweet.

Further, as noted by Maggie Haberman of The New York Times, Trump’s tweet coincided with a CNN report on how a spy was pulled out of Russia in 2017 over fears of the president handling classified intelligence.

CNN VP of communications Matt Dornic has responded, via Twitter — touting the network’s most recent monthly Nielsen numbers, which were bolstered by two mammoth ratings nights for the Democratic presidential debates:

[Mediaite]

Trump defends Alabama forecast using old Dorian map with disclaimer

In a Wednesday afternoon tweet, President Trump shared a week-old hurricane graphic showing the various model runs for Dorian before it had even slammed into the Bahamas.

“This was the originally projected path of the Hurricane in its early stages. As you can see, almost all models predicted it to go through Florida also hitting Georgia and Alabama. I accept the Fake News apologies!” Trump said in the tweet, referencing the flak he has taken for having warned Alabama against the hurricane.

As the South Florida Water Management District plot shows, the president is correct to say early forecasts did acknowledge Dorian could have swept across the Florida Peninsula toward southeast Alabama.

However, meteorologists, journalists, and politicians have condemned the president for providing outdated information. He first warned Alabama could be hit “harder than anticipated” on Sunday, days after it became clear Dorian would instead ride along the East Coast away from Alabama.

The National Weather Station in Birmingham even put out a tweet after Trump first mentioned Alabama, asserting the state would not see “any impacts” from Dorian because it was projected to remain too far east.

As for his latest tweet, Trump did not mention that the hurricane model plot was dated Aug. 28 and his first warning for Alabama was on Sept. 1.

And what’s more, below the graphic is a disclaimer that says, “NHC Advisories and County Emergency Management Statements supersede this product. This graphic should compliment, not replace, NHC discussions. If anything on this graphic causes confusion, ignore the entire product.”

[Washington Examiner]

Reality

Here is the NWS map at the time of Trump’s tweet on September 1st.

Trump Trashes WaPo, Denies Report He Promised Pardons to Officials If They Broke Law to Build the Wall

President Donald Trump blasted the Washington Post on Twitter this afternoon over reporting that he promised pardons to officials who would have to break the law to get the border wall done.

The Post reported Trump is frustrated with the pace of progress and desperate to get the wall built ahead of the 2020 election, and so he dismissed concerns about eminent domain, telling people to “take the land” and if they get in trouble “don’t worry, I’ll pardon you.”

Trump denied the report and claimed the Post made it up “in order to demean and disparage”:

A White House official responded to the Post saying that “Trump is joking when he makes such statements about pardons.”

[Mediaite]

Trump warns media ‘treading in very dangerous territory’ for reporting bad poll numbers

President Donald Trump hurled new warnings at the news media for reporting damaging stories and negative poll numbers.

The president’s approval rating was measured at 43 percent by two new surveys by NBC/Wall Street Journal and Fox News, and polls continue to show him losing to various Democratic challengers.

Trump insisted Monday that his “new internal polls” show the strongest support he’s had so far, and also complained that unfair media coverage kept his approval ratings low — and he retweeted those claims with a new threat against the media.

[Raw Story]

Trump lashes out at Fox News’s Shep Smith, says ‘fake news CNN is better’

President Trump on Wednesday renewed his criticism of Fox News anchor Shepard Smith, arguing that “Fake News CNN is better” and saying that he now tunes in to the conservative news outlet One America News Network whenever he gets the chance.

“Watching Fake News CNN is better than watching Shepard Smith, the lowest rated show on @FoxNews,” Trump tweeted on a day when he visited first responders and survivors of mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. “Actually, whenever possible, I turn to [One America News Network]!”

It was not immediately clear what Trump’s tweet — which came during Smith’s daily program and while Trump was aboard Air Force One to El Paso — was referencing. 

Trump earlier Wednesday visited Dayton to meet with those impacted by a mass shooting over the weekend that left nine people dead. 

Smith acknowledged Trump’s tweet during his show Wednesday, saying, “Good afternoon, Mr. President. It’s nice to have you with us.”

The Hill has reached out to Fox News for comment.

Trump has repeatedly denounced the media during his presidency, often referring to it as “fake news” and the “enemy of the people.” But he has consistently praised Fox News and network hosts such as Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson. He has taken a different view of Smith, though. 

In March, the president derided Smith as the “lowest rated anchor,” saying that he should be working at CNN. 

Smith has consistently taken a critical view of Trump during his two-plus years in the White House. Among other things, he fact-checked Trump’s prime-time address on border security in January during his daily news program. 

Last month, he described Trump’s attacks on a group of minority congresswomen as a “misleading and xenophobic eruption of distraction and division.”

Trump has recently shown a greater willingness to condemn Fox News over what he views as unfair coverage. After the network aired a “F— Trump” chant from a bar in France in July, Trump claimed that Fox News was “changing fast” and forgetting “the people who got them there.”

He lashed out at the network again just weeks later after one of its polls showed him losing to former Vice President Joe Biden in a hypothetical 2020 presidential matchup. 

“Fox News is at it again,” he tweeted. “So different from what they used to be.”

[The Hill]

Trump blames news media for causing ‘anger and rage’ in wake of domestic terror attack

Donald Trump has blamed what he called “Fake News” for stoking “anger and rage” in the wake of two gun attacks that killed a total of 29 people, one of which is being treated as a case of domestic terrorism.

In a tweet on Monday morning, the president said the media had a responsibility to safeguard “life and safety” in the United States. 

“Fake News has contributed greatly to the anger and rage that has built up over many years,” he wrote. 

“News coverage has got to start being fair, balanced and unbiased, or these terrible problems will only get worse!”

The tweet came at the end of a string of angry missives about the El Pasoand Dayton mass shootings over the weekend, which saw 29 people shot dead in less than 24 hours. 

Earlier, Mr Trump had thrown his support behind tougher background checks for buying guns, but then insisted any legislation was tied to immigration reform. 

There is no obvious connection between the two shootings and immigration reform. The suspect in El Paso, Patrick Crusius, is believed to be a white nationalist and police are treating the attack as an act of domestic terrorism.

Now, the president has turned his ire on the familiar foe of the media and appeared to accuse journalists of being partly to blame for the epidemic of gun violence which blights America. 

Speaking to reporters just before boarding Air Force One, Mr Trump had offered his condolences to the families of those killed in Dayton and El Paso. 

“We love the people,” he added. “Hate has no place in our country.”

However, earlier Democrats had accused Mr Trump of “sowing seeds of hate” and said he, not the media, was responsible for the wave of right-wing terrorist attacks in recent years.

Cory Booker, a Democratic senator and presidential candidate, told NBC: “You reap what you sow, and he is sowing seeds of hate in this country.

“This harvest of hate violence we’re seeing right now lies at his feet. He is responsible.”

Mr Trump has repeatedly attacked the media since he was elected, condemning almost any critical coverage of his divisive presidency as “fake news”. 

Although the business mogul’s linking of the press with the two shootings appears to simply continue this trend, he is not the first person to connect journalism and gun violence. 

There is some evidence the media’s coverage of mass shootings can lead to a wave of copycat attacks. 

One study from last year by Australian researchers concluded there were spikes in the numbers of shootings in America after a high profile incident is given wall-to-wall exposure on rolling TV news. 

In total, the study suggested 58 per cent of all shootings in the three year sample they examined could be linked to coverage of previous tragedies. 

[The Independent]

Trump grows furious when reporter points out his dismal approval numbers from black Americans

President Donald Trump on Tuesday grew visibly angry after a reporter informed him that a recent poll showed that the vast majority of black Americans believe he is a racist.

While talking with reporters on the White House lawn, one reporter asked the president why 80 percent of black voters in a Quinnipiac poll said that he was racist. The same poll also showed that 89 percent of black voters said they would “definitely” not vote for Trump in 2020.

The president responded by blaming the reporter.

“You know why? Because the fake news doesn’t report it properly,” Trump said. “People like you! Fake news does not report it properly! If the news reported it properly, the right way, like instead of a statement like you just made, if the news reported it properly for all of the things I’ve done for African-Americans… I think I’d do very well with the African Americans!”

[Raw Story]

Media

Trump lashes out at Washington Post over reporting: ‘Presidential Harassment!’

President Trump on Sunday lashed out The Washington Post over its reporting on his attacks against a group of minority congresswomen, calling it an example of “Presidential Harassment.”

“The Washington Post Story, about my speech in North Carolina and tweet, with its phony sources who do not exist, is Fake News,” Trump tweeted, referring to a rally in North Carolina his campaign held last week. “The only thing people were talking about is the record setting crowd and the tremendous enthusiasm, far greater than the Democrats. You’ll see in 2020!”

“Presidential Harassment!” Trump added in a separate tweet, before tweeting “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN” in a subsequent one. 

The tweet itself didn’t specify which story Trump was referring to, but Twitter users pointed to one that described the turmoil inside the White House after the president told a group of minority congresswomen to “go back” to the “crime infested places” they came from. 

The Post, in a report published Saturday, described an effort from friends, advisers and political allies to resolve the problems that came from Trump’s attacks. 

The Post did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill on Trump’s latest tweets. 

Trump last week sparked an uproar by telling four freshman House Democrats — Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.), Ilhan Omar (Minn.), Rashida Tlaib (Mich.) and Ayanna Pressley (Mass.) — to “go back” to the “crime infested places” they came from before speaking out about U.S. policies.  

Several Democrats, as well as multiple GOP lawmakers, condemned the comments as racist and xenophobic. The House last Tuesday voted on a resolution to condemn Trump’s tweets as racist. 

The vote was followed on Wednesday by a Trump rally crowd chanting “send her back” as the president attacked Omar, a Somali refugee who came to the U.S. with her family as a child. 

Trump distanced himself from the chant, saying he disagreed with it. But he has continued to rail against the congresswomen, saying on Sundaythat they should “apologize” to the U.S. for their hateful rhetoric. 

Trump has repeatedly attacked the media during his presidency, often describing it as “fake news” and the “enemy of the people.”

[The Hill]

Trump Twitter-rages over media’s coverage of the racist ‘send her back’ chant he incited

President Donald Trump on Thursday said he did not like the racist “send her back” chant directed at Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) that erupted during his campaign rally this week.

On Friday, however, the president attacked the media for criticizing the chant even as he boasted about the large number of people at the rally who were conducting the racist chant.

“It is amazing how the Fake News Media became ‘crazed’ over the chant ‘send her back’ by a packed Arena (a record) crowd in the Great State of North Carolina, but is totally calm & accepting of the most vile and disgusting statements made by the three Radical Left Congresswomen,” the president wrote. “Mainstream Media, which has lost all credibility, has either officially or unofficially become a part of the Radical Left Democrat Party. It is a sick partnership, so pathetic to watch!”

Trump then bashed the media for covering the adoring crowd that welcomed Omar home when she arrived back in her home state of Minnesota.

“They even covered a tiny staged crowd as they greeted Foul Mouthed Omar in Minnesota, a State which I will win in 2020 because they can’t stand her and her hatred of our Country,” he wrote.

[Raw Story]

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