It sure is fun to be a journalist critical of the President right now! At a public meeting with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin during the G-20 conference this week, Donald Trump said that they should “get rid” of journalists because something something fake news.
“Get rid of them,” said Trump. “Fake news is a great term, isn’t it? You don’t have this problem in Russia but we do.”
“We also have,” Putin replied in English. “It’s the same.”
Trump also bonded with Putin over a scorn for journalists.
“Get rid of them. Fake news is a great term, isn’t it? You don’t have this problem in Russia, but we do.”
“We also have,” Putin answered, in English. “It’s the same.”
They shared a chuckle. pic.twitter.com/atGGYxnwfc
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) June 28, 2019
You know what else they have in Russia? Twenty-one murdered journalists since Putin seized power in 2000, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.
Donald Trump has, of course, repeatedly referred to journalists as “the enemy of the people,” a phrase coined by none other than Josef Stalin as he used it to justify his killing of over 1.2 million people he imagined to be plotting against him. Since his attacks on what he likes to call the “fake news media” began, journalists have been routinely attacked at his rallies.
No reporters have been killed. Yet.
Naturally, many people are appalled rather than amused by this remark, including Senator and presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren.
Today, Trump joked with Putin about interfering in our elections. He joked about getting "rid of" journalists with a man who has reporters murdered. The president is looking out for himself—not the American people. We need a president who will always stand up for American values.— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) June 28, 2019
It’s funny because in Russian journalists are murdered, get it? https://t.co/khkiy5H7Zy— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) June 28, 2019
LOL MURDERING JOURNALISTS IS HILARIOUS https://t.co/qwGaZHrN5W— The Volatile Mermaid (@OhNoSheTwitnt) June 28, 2019
It’s funny cause Putin murders journalists. https://t.co/dxdj8hAOPs— Reza Aslan (@rezaaslan) June 28, 2019
Get it — Putin doesn’t have the same “problem” with journalists cuz *wink wink* the nosiest ones sometimes get killed. https://t.co/aMn5q0zh5E— Matthew Rosenberg (@AllMattNYT) June 28, 2019
See, the joke is that Russia is an authoritative regime that attacked U.S. elections and silences and kills journalists. It’s all very funny you see. pic.twitter.com/DPyWh0buSO— Rory Cooper (@rorycooper) June 28, 2019
Putin literally does get rid of reporters. MbS has columnists dismembered with bone saws. Our president keeps company with journalist-killers and jokes about it. Do not underestimate how dangerous this is. https://t.co/snnm2YRTbv— Sulome Anderson (@SulomeAnderson) June 28, 2019
Today President Trump joked with Vladimir Putin about how they should “get rid of” journalists.— Amnesty International (@amnestyusa) June 28, 2019
For a sitting U.S. President to articulate the position that violence against the free press is a laughing matter is nothing short of outrageous.
Russia actually does “get rid of” journalists: shooting them, throwing them off balconies, imprisoning them. https://t.co/WmO0g863cV— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) June 28, 2019
Trump jokes to Putin they should 'get rid' of journalists | US news | The Guardian https://t.co/XuHx118ODA - HAHA, what a funny guy; Trump sense of humor is so endearing - to Satan.— silvanet???? (@silvanet) June 28, 2019
"At least 58 journalists have died violent deaths in the country since 1992, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists." https://t.co/3e4bVWmEMh— Brendan Nyhan (@BrendanNyhan) June 28, 2019
Not a joke. "Get[ting] rid" of the press is what authoritarians do. In Putin's Russia, they get killed. https://t.co/ERLL4VsX21
“Get rid of them,” the president of the United States says of journalists to the Russian president who has literally gotten rid of them.— Clyde Haberman (@ClydeHaberman) June 28, 2019
Then two despots share a chuckle. https://t.co/wmNVCqYsZe
To make matters worse, today marks the one-year anniversary of the shooting at the Capital Gazette in Maryland in which a gunman murdered five employees because they published an article about him harassing someone from his old high school. The governor of Maryland has declared today Freedom of the Press Day in the state. Trump celebrated by basically suggesting more journalists be killed.
One year ago today, 5 journalists were murdered at the Capitol Gazette. https://t.co/RgzxgjaB56— Justin Miller (@justinjm1) June 28, 2019
Today, on the anniversary of the Capital Gazette shooting Trump joked with Putin about how he needed to “get rid” of journalists. A new Trump rock bottom. This is an assault by Trump on all Americans. It’s disgusting and he shouldn’t be president. He’s betrayed all of us.— Scott Dworkin (@funder) June 28, 2019
THE CAPITAL GAZETTE SHOOTING WHERE 5 JOURNALISTS WERE MURDERED AND 2 INJURED WAS 1 YEAR AGO *TODAY* https://t.co/fY1A3TVjbs
— Dr. Yasmin (@DoctorYasmin) June 28, 2019
Today, on the one year mark of the Capital Gazette mass shooting deaths of five Maryland newspaper employees by a gunman with a grudge and easy access to guns, Donald Trump joked with Putin about how he needed to “get rid” of journalists. https://t.co/UKgrv2QxC7— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) June 28, 2019
One year to the day after the horrific shooting in the Capital Gazette newsroom Trump says to Putin about journalists: “Get rid of them. Fake news is a great term, isn’t it? You don’t have this problem in Russia, but we do.”https://t.co/cL8I0BlFYp
— Polly Sigh (@dcpoll) June 28, 2019
It was a year ago today that a man decided to "get rid of" journalists who reported on him accurately.— Jennifer Peebles (@jpeebles) June 28, 2019
He walked into their newspaper offices and shot five people dead. https://t.co/VLm0mIMJKl
today is the anniversary of the capital gazette shooting which took several journalists lives. and POTUS decides to make a quip with Putin to "get rid of journalists". honestly, it's an affront to press freedom everywhere.— Nora Benavidez (@AttorneyNora) June 28, 2019
That sure is one healthy democracy we got there. Be a shame if something happened to it.