Tags: Trump Administration | Donald Trump | Media | president | Trump | libel

WashPost: Four Threats to the Media Under President Trump

Image: WashPost: Four Threats to the Media Under President Trump

(AP)

By    |   Thursday, 10 Nov 2016 10:43 AM

President-elect Donald Trump has made his distaste for journalists and media publications clear over the course of his campaign. As president, he'll have several options for how to deal with the press.

Trump could push through lower standards for libel, as he's talked about doing.

"Believe me, if I become president, oh, do they have problems," Trump said at a rally in February, referring to the media, according to The Washington Post. 

"They're gonna have such problems. ... I'm going to open up our libel laws, so when they write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money."

In October, Trump said he'd like U.S. libel laws to match those of the United Kingdom, where journalists aren't protected by the legal standard of "actual malice," meaning journalists can only be sued for libel if "a statement was made with knowledge that it was false or with reckless disregard of whether it was false," according to Cornell University Law School's Legal Information Institute.

Without this protection, which was established by a 164 Supreme Court case, journalists could be sued for making honest mistakes.

Trump could also limit the press' access to the president, as he limited their access to him as a candidate during the election, which the White House Correspondents Association called "serious breach of historical precedent and First Amendment responsibilities."

He's maintained a media blacklist, which includes the aforementioned Washington Post, and refused to allow a media pool to follow him on the campaign trail, or to ride in the same airplane as him.

Trump could strip funding from public broadcasting, which Republicans have attempted to do since the Corporation for Public Broadcasting was established in 1967, according to Politico.

Even if Trump doesn't use his presidential powers to limit the media's ability to report, his continued disrespect and dismissal of the press could cause his followers to abandon those news outlets, if they haven't already.

"Forget the press," Trump said in October, "read the Internet."

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President-elect Donald Trump has made his distaste for journalists and media publications clear over the course of his campaign. As president, he'll have several options for how to deal with the press.
Media, president, Trump, libel
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Thursday, 10 Nov 2016 10:43 AM
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