We all know that the relationship between Trump and the media is contentious at best.
Most of the time, however, the strained relationship results from the media’s unfair portrayal of Trump and his policies. It’s only fair then that Trump gets to push back.
In a hilarious exchange, Trump joked that there were too many reporters in the room and that 75% of them should leave in order to prevent spreading the coronavirus.
Take a look:
Check out the beginning of the White House briefing:
Thank you very much. I think this is going to be a very important conference and I’ll get to that toward the middle, but I have a few things to report. And I want to thank you all for being here.
And I have to say, I think with social distancing that the media has been much nicer. I don’t know what it is — all these empty — these in-between chairs. We probably shouldn’t have anybody sitting behind you either. You know, you should probably go back. But I love it. It’s so much nicer. But I shouldn’t say that because you’ll get me now.
Thank you all for being here. And we continue our relentless effort to defeat the Chinese virus. Before I begin, I want to start by announcing that today we are bringing home another American citizen. It was a big thing. Very big. Amer Fakhoury is on his way back to the United States after being imprisoned in Lebanon since September of 2019. He’s battling late-stage cancer. Mr. Fakhoury will now be able to receive the much-needed care and treatment in the United States. We’ve been working very hard to get him freed and he’s finally able to have his entire family at his side.
So I’m very grateful to the Lebanese government. They worked with us. And we are very proud of his family. They stood by him so strongly, and they are thrilled.
The United States has no higher priority than the safety and wellbeing of our citizens. We’ve gotten a tremendous number of hostages out, as you know. I think we’re 42-and-0. And Robert O’Brien, as you know, was our chief negotiator for a large part of it. In fact, did so well that now we have him in a different position.
So I want to thank and congratulate Robert and his team and I want to let everyone know that recovering Americans held captive and imprisoned abroad continues to be a top priority for my administration.
The Western Journal reported on the exchange:
President Donald Trump joked at Thursday’s coronavirus briefing about getting rid of all the reporters he does not like, causing a least one member of the media to characterize the quip as an “attack.”
During the briefing, a reporter asked the president if he had “any guidance for Congress” after two congressmen announced they had tested positive for the virus.
Trump instead directed his advice, partially tongue-in-cheek, to the reporters in the briefing room.
“I know all of them,” he said of Congress. “I don’t know if they’re sitting like you people are sitting. You’re actually sitting too close.”
“Really, we should probably get rid of about another 75, 80 percent of you,” the president said.
“I’ll have just two or three that I like in this room. I think that’s a great way of doing it. We just figured a new way of doing it. But you’re actually much too close, you should leave immediately.”