'Well, Boo Hoo!' NPR Reporter Hyped Trump Denying WashPost Credentials, Ignored Dems Doing Same Thing

June 16th, 2016 3:43 PM

NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik slammed Donald Trump as a crybaby who can't handle rude press coverage in a Tuesday interview on Morning Edition dedicated to Trump denying press credentials to The Washington Post.

Midway through the interview, when asked if Trump had a point about the tone or quality or the Post’s coverage, Folkenflik snidely said “Well, boo hoo” to the presumptive Republican nominee:

RENEE MONTAGNE: Well, just finally, does Trump have a point, though? I mean, is he really facing some bad press coverage that also has some issues of its own?

DAVID FOLKENFLIK: Well, look, boo-hoo! This is the job, man! You know, you're going to run for president. You have to face scrutiny. You've got to take the lumps. You know, the press has been a target of candidates, particularly on the right, for decades going back to Richard Nixon. But, you know, this is a reflection of a hostile approach to the press, somebody who has, you know, who sued a New York Times reporter, Tim O'Brien, for reporting things unfavorably.

And yet, it's worth remembering, Donald Trump hates media coverage but loves media attention. This campaign couldn't exist without fairly full-blown 24/7 coverage. And in this case, Donald Trump doesn't like the scrutiny, so he says get the heck off my lawn.

This is also worth remembering: National Public Radio never aired a segment about Obama removing three McCain-endorsing newspapers (The Dallas Morning News, the New York Post and The Washington Times)  from his press plane at the very end of the 2008 campaign, in favor of writers from the black magazines Essence, Ebony, and Jet. NPR also failed to notice when Hillary Clinton’s campaign banned right-leaning reporter David Martosko of the London Daily Mail from their print pool last year.

Earlier, Folkenflik couldn’t provide any real detail about why Trump would be upset with the Post, unless it was their terrific investigative reporting:

RENEE MONTAGNE: Obviously, Trump -- not a fan of the media, actually gets a lot of response from his crowds, his audiences. They often boo when he talks about the media. Why has he now singled out The Washington Post, though?  

FOLKENFLIK: Well, he gets a lot of mileage for going after the media generally. What happened here, The Post - it appears that he was upset The Post reported on his vague insinuations about what President Obama might have known about the Orlando attacks. Trump said, if you recall, there's something going on - very vague, very unsubstantiated. The Post covered it, said that he suggested that Obama might be involved, later softened that phrase into connected to in a headline.

But, you know, that's against the backdrop of The Post having done some of the best enterprise reporting in the mainstream media about Donald Trump, looking after - about - into his holdings in Atlantic City, reporting about some of the strong allegations against how Trump University was conducted.

If he were fair, Folkenflik would have noticed it was worse than "vague and unsubstantiated" to claim Trump said Obama was involved in the Orlando shooting. He could have also noticed some of the remarkable hostility the paper has shown Trump:

-- On February 21, Danielle Allen, “a political theorist at Harvard University and a contributing columnist for The Post,” wrote that with Trump’s progress towards achieving the U.S. presidency thus far has led her to understand “exactly how Hitler could have come to power in Germany.” Post editorial cartoonist Tom Toles compares Trump to Hitler, most recently on June 14.

-- On February 22, the Post published a morning “Acts of Faith” item Post by Joseph Loconte, who compared Trump to the Pope-appointed emperor Charlemagne, who “ordered thousands executed” twelve centuries ago, in the year 782.

-- Then there’s February 24, when the newspaper's editorial board decided to compare Trump instead to the 20th century murderers of millions: “He would round up and deport 11 million people, a forced movement on a scale not attempted since Stalin or perhaps Pol Pot.”

-- The Post editorial writers repeated this Pol Pot slur on April 22: "Remember that Mr. Trump promised to round up 11 million undocumented immigrants and deport them, in what would be the largest forced population movement since Pol Pot’s genocide of the Cambodian people."

PS: When I made this point to Folkenflik on Twitter, he fought back, suggesting Trump basically deserved all the slurs for being such a jerk to people:

Folkenflik failed -- like many other liberals -- to balance the ledger by noting Hillary Clinton's hostility to the press, even though she has much less to complain about than Trump.

CORRECTION: I originally left out the final tweet in the chain and claimed "That's where the argument stopped." I added the missing piece.