White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Monday that President Donald Trump just wants terror attacks—as well as the “success that he’s had” in his first weeks in office—to get the media coverage they “should be” given.
“He felt members of the media don’t always cover some of those events to the extent that other events might get covered,” Spicer told reporters on Air Force One, as quoted in a White House pool report. “Protests will get blown out of the water, and yet an attack or a foiled attack doesn’t necessarily get the same coverage.”
Spicer said that Trump is “doing what he can” for national security and that reporting doesn’t reflect the “wide degree of support” he claimed Trump’s policies have garnered.
“And that’s why I think sometimes the polls don’t reflect what you see on the media,” Spicer said. “A lot of those stories and success that he’s had—in a mere two and a half weeks in office—aren’t exactly covered to the degree to which they should be.”
Spicer said the White House will “provide a list later” of attacks that have not gotten the coverage they “deserved.”
During a speech on Monday before American troops at the U.S. Central Command and Special Operations Command headquarters at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, Trump claimed that the media is not reporting on terrorist attacks, though he did not explain why.
“It’s gotten to a point where it’s not even being reported. And in many cases the very, very dishonest press doesn’t want to report it,” he said. “They have their reasons and you understand that.”
Spicer denied that Trump meant attacks are underreported to make him look bad, per the pool report.
“No, that’s not it,” he said. “That’s not what he said at all.”
Spicer also took potshots at a New York Times report about tactical misfires during Trump’s first weeks in office, which he said contained “literally blatant factual errors.”
“That story was so riddled with inaccuracies and lies that they owe the President an apology,” he said. “It’s unacceptable to see that kind of reporting or so-called reporting.”
Spicer called it “not an accurate portrayal of what’s really happening” in the White House.
“Start at the top. I don’t think the President owns a bathrobe. He definitely doesn’t wear one,” Spicer added, apparently referring to a line in the story that describes Trump watching television in his bathrobe in the evenings.
Journalists on Twitter were quick to dig up old photos of Trump in a robe.
— Yashar (@yashar) February 6, 2017
Trump accused the New York Times on Monday of writing “total fiction” and making up “stories & sources” in articles about him.
But senior vice president for communications Eileen Murphy told TPM via email that the White House had not contacted the New York Times with any requested corrections to the story.