Trump attacks Washington Post over anonymous sources

Trump attacks Washington Post over anonymous sources
© UPI Photo

President TrumpDonald John TrumpHouse Republican threatens to push for Rosenstein impeachment unless he testifies Judge suggests Trump’s tweet about Stormy Daniels was ‘hyperbole’ not defamation Rosenstein faces Trump showdown MORE on Monday lashed out at the media over its use of anonymous sources, in particular singling out The Washington Post as a "disgrace to journalism."

"The Washington Post is constantly quoting 'anonymous sources' that do not exist. Rarely do they use the name of anyone because there is no one to give them the kind of negative quote that they are looking for. They are a discgrace [sic] to journalism but then again, so are many others!" Trump tweeted.

ADVERTISEMENT

The president has previously attacked the media for using anonymous sources. He claimed last month that The New York Times made up the existence of a source after the individual had given a White House–sanctioned briefing to multiple reporters under the condition his name not be used.

Such conditioned briefings are common for the White House and agencies. The practice of not naming sources is also common for journalists who wish to protect the identity of the sources or allow them to discuss information freely.

Trump has also frequently gone after The Washington Post and its owner, Jeff Bezos, who also owns Amazon. He reportedly urged the postmaster general to double shipping rates for Amazon amid claims the company is hurting the Postal Service.

Trump's renewed criticism of the media comes five days after a gunman opened fire at the office of The Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Md., killing five people. 

Police said the suspected shooter, Jarrod Ramos, had a long-running dispute with The Capital Gazette over a column about a criminal harassment case against him. Ramos, 38, brought a defamation suit in 2012 against the paper, but it was thrown out by a judge.

However, critics have warned that Trump has stoked animosity toward the media since hitting the campaign trail in 2015. He frequently derides the press as "fake news" and has called media the "enemy of the people."

In the wake of last week's shooting, Trump said journalists should be "free from the fear of being violently attacked while doing their job.”

The president on Tuesday ordered flags be lowered to half-staff to honor the shooting victims. He reportedly declined the request to do so at first.

Trump on Monday went on to defend his habit of capitalizing certain words in his tweets, saying he does so for emphasis.

"After having written many best selling books, and somewhat priding myself on my ability to write, it should be noted that the Fake News constantly likes to pour [sic] over my tweets looking for a mistake. I capitalize certain words only for emphasis, not [because] they should be capitalized!" Trump tweeted.