The memos written by former FBI Director James Comey reveal just how hellbent President Donald Trump is on cracking down on leaks to the media from his administration.
Trump bashed the media throughout his campaign and has continued to try to delegitimize coverage of his administration now that he’s in the White House, but the memos released Thursday night show that Trump wanted to throw journalists in jail.
During a conversation with Comey in February 2017, Trump allegedly complained about leaks on his calls with foreign leaders and former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn’s conversations with Russian officials. Comey wrote in a memo that he told Trump he would like to go after leakers and “nail one to the door as a message.”
In response, Trump suggested the FBI go after reporters and noted that reporters used to go to jail, according to Comey’s memo. Trump returned to the topic of jailing reporters later in the conversation, and he suggested that investigators jail reporters in order to extract information from them, according to Comey.
“They spend a couple days in jail, make a new friend, and they are ready to talk,” Trump told Comey, according to the memo.
Comey wrote that he laughed in response to that comment from Trump.
Read part of the memo on jailing reporters: