CNN accuses Trump of online bullying after attack on Don Lemon

CNN accused President TrumpDonald John TrumpReporters defend CNN's Acosta after White House says he 'disrespected' Trump with question Security costs of Trump visit to Scotland sparks outrage among Scottish citizens Ex-CIA officer: Prosecution of Russians indicted for DNC hack 'ain't ever going to happen' MORE on Monday of being an online bully after the president tweeted an attack against anchor Don Lemon, calling him the “dumbest man on television.”

“In a world where bullies torment kids on social media to devastating effect on a regular basis with insults and name-calling, it is sad to see our president engaging in the very same behavior himself,” a CNN spokesperson said in a statement to The Hill. “Leaders should lead by example.”

Trump has been fuming at the media in the wake of several high-profile retractions and an unflattering profile in The New York Times that ran over the weekend, which claimed that the president watches hours of cable news coverage about himself every day.

In a Monday morning tweet, Trump disputed the Times's report and lashed out at Lemon, a frequent critic of the president.


CNN has been aggressive in its criticism of Trump, and many conservatives complain that the anchors and panelists on the network have abandoned any effort to be fair to the administration and instead have taken up an effort to damage him politically. 

That includes a high-profile “Facts First” ad campaign the network is running that mockingly digs at the Trump administration as untruthful and delusional.

Meanwhile, Trump and his allies have ramped up their attacks against the media in recent days amid a string of embarrassing retractions and corrections at prominent news outlets.

On Friday, CNN reported that Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., had received access to hacked Democratic emails from WikiLeaks more than a week before they were leaked to the public — an allegation that NBC and CBS claimed to confirm and that was presented as direct evidence of collusion with Russians during the campaign.

CNN later corrected its story to say that someone who was not affiliated with WikiLeaks had emailed Trump Jr. to notify him that WikiLeaks had already published the hacked emails online.

That came after ABC suspended one of its top reporters for wrongly reporting that the president had directed former national security adviser Michael Flynn to make contact with Russian officials during the campaign.


Over the weekend, the president also demanded that a Washington Post reporter be fired for misrepresenting the size of the crowd that had gathered to see his rally in Pensacola, Fla.