Trump has asked Attorney General William Barr to launch a Department of Justice investigation into the media’s coronavirus coverage.
The problem is that the crisis fits into his preexisting and deeply held worldview—that the media is always searching for a story to bring him down. Covid-19 is merely the latest instance, and he’s reacting in familiar ways. “So much FAKE NEWS!” Trump tweeted this morning. “He wants Justice to open investigations of the media for market manipulation,” a source close to the White House told me.
Trump is also frustrated with his West Wing for not getting a handle on the news cycle. “He’s very frustrated he doesn’t have a good team around him,” a former White House official said. On Friday, he forced out acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney and replaced him with former House Freedom Caucus chair Mark Meadows. Trump thought the virus was “getting beyond Mick,” a person briefed on the internal discussions said.
Trump has a long history of making demands by saying he wants something and an established history of pressuring those around him into political hit jobs. The way he pressured former FBI Director James Comey is but one example.
Trump thinks that the stock market can be manipulated by media coverage, so he believes that the press is conspiring against him to manipulate the stock market by reporting on the coronavirus.
The stock market is plummeting, because they see a domestic public health crisis that is worsening by the day, and a president who has no clue what to do about it. Trump is trying to deal with the coronavirus as a stock market problem, not a health issue. He is incapable of understanding that the markets would go up if he would competently address the coronavirus crisis.
Not even William Barr will launch an investigation into the media for their reporting on the coronavirus.
Trump only cares about the stock market and is looking to blame the media for his total failure as a president.
Trump’s lies can’t hide the ugly truth about the spread of the coronavirus.
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Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association