Trump finds new ways to condemn reporting he doesn't like

Oct 12, 2017, 00:38
Trump finds new ways to condemn reporting he doesn't like

In his tweet earlier in the day Trump raised the possibility of the broadcast licenses of NBC and other networks being challenged.

If implemented, Trump's proposal would "make Americans less safe, could cause another nuclear arms race, and would inflame tensions with North Korea and other countries", Martin concluded.

Citing three sources who attended a national security meeting in July, NBC News reported Trump's suggestion nuclear buildup surprised Cabinet members including Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford.

"In suggesting that a broadcast network's license be targeted because of its coverage, Mr. Trump once again evoked the Watergate era when President Richard M. Nixon told advisers to make it hard for The Washington Post to renew the FCC license for a Florida television station it owned", The New York Times said in its report on the tweet. "That was just fake news by NBC", he said. Trump denied the story and suggested the Senate Intelligence Committee investigate "the fake news networks".

Trump claimed that Secretary of Defense James Mattis would soon put out a statement calling the report "fake news".

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"Fake @NBCNews made up a story that I wanted a "tenfold" increase in our USA nuclear arsenal", Trump wrote.

Speaking to reporters at the White House during a meeting with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Trump said the report was not true. Officials told Trump that there are legal and practical reasons why the nations' nuclear weapons stockpile could not be increased, NBC sources said, later telling the network's reporting team that no expansion is planned.

As a businessman and candidate, Trump frequently threatened to sue news organizations over unflattering coverage. During a speech at the United Nations last month, Trump said the United States was prepared to "totally destroy" the North if necessary, and he derisively referred to dictator Kim Jong Un as the "rocket man".

The Federal Communications Commission, an independent federal agency, does not license broadcast networks, but issues them to individual broadcast stations that are renewed on a staggered basis for eight-year periods.

"Even if Trump is right and the story is completely invented, there is no basis under the First Amendment to ensure NBC loses its broadcast license, which would mean that it would have to stop broadcasting".

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