Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonOvernight Health Care: CDC pushes for expanding HIV testing, treatment | Dem group launches ads attacking Trump on Medicare, Medicaid cuts | Hospitals, insurers spar over surprise bills | O'Rourke under pressure from left on Medicare for all O'Rourke faces sharp backlash from left Dem strategist says South Carolina will be first 'real test' for O'Rourke MORE on Tuesday defended her press availability amid criticism that she has not held a press conference for months.


“I have done nearly 300 interviews just in 2016,” Clinton told Jake Tapper during a phone interview on CNN's "The Lead," adding later that she was herself “shocked” by the figure.

“I believe that it's important to continue to speak to the press as I'm doing right now,” Clinton said.

Shortly after the interview, presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpWarren: 'White supremacists pose a threat to the United States like any other terrorist group' National Enquirer paid 0,000 for Bezos texts: report Santorum: Trump should 'send emails to a therapist' instead of tweeting MORE attacked Clinton on Twitter

Earlier in the day, Trump engaged in a new fight with the media.

Trump, who frequently holds press conferences, on Tuesday slammed media coverage of his promise to donate money to veterans organizations.

Clinton’s comments about doing more than 300 interviews includes calls into shows like Tapper’s, as well as short interviews at campaign stops around the country. The former first lady has also appeared on a number of entertainment programs where she has been interviewed.

Such interactions are easier for a campaign to control, and it is more difficult for television reporters to ask questions to a person being interviewed by the phone.

Clinton suggested she would hold a press conference soon.

“Oh, I'm sure we will,” Clinton said. “I believe that we do and we should answer questions. Of course I'm going to in many, many different kinds of settings.”

Trump lashed out at reporters during a combative press conference on Tuesday when pushed to explain his fundraising for veterans groups earlier this year.

He announced that he'd given $5.6 million to a variety of veterans groups, but went after reporters following months of questioning about the funds he raised.

The billionaire businessman referred to the media as "dishonest" and called one TV reporter a "sleaze," indicating elsewhere that he'd "continue to attack the press" as president. 

Trump had declared during a fundraising event Jan. 28 that he had raised $6 million, though media outlets including The Washington Post pressed for details on where the money went.

The Post also reported last week that after nearly four months of media pressure, Trump said he had fulfilled his pledge to personally donate $1 million for the veterans groups.

Clinton said the incident illustrated “the difference between what Donald Trump says and what Donald Trump does” before defending her own donations to veterans groups. 

— Updated 7:22 p.m.