April Ryan: Spicer Attacks ‘Credible’ Media Like Me, While Allowing ‘Fake News’ Peddlers Into WH

March 29th, 2017 1:05 PM

On Wednesday’s New Day on CNN, hosts Chris Cuomo and Alisyn Camerota threw a pity party for reporter April Ryan, commiserating with her about how unfairly Trump treats the “credible” media, after her testy exchange with White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer Tuesday.

Ryan laughably denied she wanted to be the story, after coming on national television to defend herself. She went on to bash conservative and independent media in press briefings as peddlers of “fake news” that shouldn’t be given media credentials.

Cuomo and Camerota first asked Ryan what she thought when Spicer “wagged his finger and shook his head” at her. “Disbelief,” she responded, gloomily.

RYAN: Disbelief. I was just asking a question, trying to get an answer and I found myself trying to defend myself. But, you know, I'm a reporter just trying to get answers and it was a simple question…. And as an administration is calling us the enemy of the people, I guess we saw some of that thought process yesterday.

Cuomo sympathized with Ryan, saying she was “allowed” to shake her head “whenever she wanted.” He then blasted Spicer’s “bogus” answer to Ryan and asked her if she thought the response was “different” than one he’d give to a reporter who didn’t look like her.

Ryan brought up the white, female Politico reporter who was called an “idiot” by Spicer in a tweet over the weekend.

RYAN: We are the press who is under attack. We are under attack by this administration. It is about discrediting credible media. And, you know, at this point, I happen to be a black woman, but I'm part of the press. So this is -- I guess this is part of a series of two women this week who have been in the news over something with the press secretary.

Eagerly, Camerota asked if she felt Spicer was sexist to her or other women. Ryan responded by saying it certainly seemed that way.

RYAN: I’m going to watch more so closely….[I]t's showing a pattern, at least this week. But, yeah, I mean, they have made attacks on the press. I am saying overarching the attacks on the press have happened but now I'm looking more closely thinking about what you're saying at the issue of women.

However, the funniest part of the interview was when Ryan claimed she didn’t “have an agenda” and didn’t want to “become” the story.

CAMEROTA: [I]s there something on a deeper, more personal level happening now?

RYAN: That's a tough one, and I want to believe that what Mike McCurry said, the former Press Secretary for Bill Clinton. He said there is a friendly adversarial relationship. I believe the friendly piece is gone now, as you said, Alisyn. It is getting personal, but it should never get personal in that room. It should be about the issues. I have no agenda, you know, calling people out. If you get personal, it could go back and forth for days and not about the issues. It is about the issues. This is the White House. This is the home, the workspace of the President of the United States, the leader of the free world. People want to know what he's thinking, what he's doing. I cover all things presidential. It is not about me. If it becomes about me, it is a sad day. And for any other reporter, it is about the issue for the American people. We cover the President of the United States for the American people. It is not about us. It is about you, the people. It is turning into a different day.

Ryan says this, after coming on national television to defend herself, and after gleefully tweeting and retweeting at least 19 tweets of other reporters, in less than 24 hours, praising her for standing up against the so-called racist and sexist attack.

Ryan ended the interview by taking a shot at the media that’s allowed into the White House press briefings now.

RYAN: Now, when it comes to fake news, oh, yeah, there's some fake news organizations out there reporting on them. Also supporting some of the spin that's offered from this White House and maybe other White Houses. But I will tell you this, too, as well. In that room that I have been sitting in for 20 years and to see it recently, you just wonder about some of the people that are coming in the room now. Are they really journalists or are they spectators posing as journalists? There is a lot of stuff going on in that room now and in this mosh that we call reporting at the White House right now. The dynamic has changed, but there is fake news out there, but I am going to say those who have covered the White House who are covering credible, credential journalists who come there every day are doing their jobs and I'm telling you it's a fight. And it should not be this way. But they -- I'm telling you. I stand by the First Amendment and those journalists who are in there covering this president and other presidents.

During the interview, Cuomo also brought up Ryan’s exchange with Trump a few months ago that made headlines, where Trump asked if Ryan could “set up a meeting” with members of the Congressional Black Caucus. Cuomo repeated the media charge of “racism!” trying to get Ryan to elaborate more on that. 

CUOMO: I wonder if this would have happened to somebody who looked like me instead of April in that exchange. Do you see that one as different with the president?

While the media obsessed about this response by Trump, it’s not exactly a secret that Ryan is friendly with the CBC. She admitted as such during that same press conference and a 30-second Google image search shows her walking and talking with CBC member Elijah Cummings, in an image from her own website.