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Trump says media is part of vetting his nominees: 'We save a lot of money that way'

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says GOP senators have called to congratulate him Biden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country Biden says family will avoid business conflicts MORE on Friday defended the vetting process at the White House, telling the news media that he allows it to do much of the heavy lifting while simultaneously blaming it for the withdrawal of his nominee to lead intelligence agencies.

Trump spoke to reporters at the White House just hours after he announced he would no longer nominate Rep. John RatcliffeJohn Lee RatcliffeHillicon Valley: Government used Patriot Act to gather website visitor logs in 2019 | Defense bill leaves out Section 230 repeal, includes White House cyber czar position | Officials warn hackers are targeting vaccine supply chain Government used Patriot Act to gather website visitor logs in 2019 DNI Ratcliffe: China 'greatest threat' to freedom since World War II MORE (R-Texas) as director of national intelligence. He lamented that the congressman "is being treated very unfairly by the LameStream Media" and that the nomination process would be "miserable."

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But on the South Lawn, he suggested coverage of his nominees was part of the vetting process.

"I get a name, I give it out to the press and you vet for me. A lot of time you do a very good job. Not always," Trump told reporters. "If you look at the vetting process for the White House, it is very good, but you are part of the vetting process. I give out a name to the press and you vet for me, we save a lot of money that way."

"But in the case of John, I really believe that he was being treated very harshly and very unfairly," he added.

Ratcliffe's potential nomination was undone as Republican senators expressed unease about Trump's pick, emphasizing that the director of national intelligence should be a nonpartisan post.

Several news reports in recent days have also described Ratcliffe as overstating parts of his biography relating to his work on terrorism cases as a federal prosecutor in Texas.

Ratcliffe is the latest Trump nominee to bow out of consideration amid scrutiny of their record and past remarks.

In the past 15 months, Ronny Jackson withdrew as Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Veterans Affairs, Patrick ShanahanPatrick Michael ShanahanProgressive House Democrats urge Biden against Defense chief with contractor ties Trump fires Defense chief Mark Esper House Armed Services chairman expresses confidence in Esper amid aircraft carrier coronavirus crisis MORE bowed out as Defense secretary nominee, Stephen MooreStephen MooreThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Mastercard - Barr splits with Trump on election; pardon controversy Sunday shows - Virus surge dominates ahead of fraught Thanksgiving holiday Trump ally Stephen Moore: President 'going to leave the office triumphant' MORE and Herman CainHerman Cain'SNL' host Dave Chappelle urges Biden voters to be 'humble' winners 18 Trump rallies have led to 30,000 COVID-19 cases: Stanford University study From HBCUs to Capitol Hill: How Congress can play an important role MORE pulled out consideration for the Federal Reserve Board and Heather Nauert took herself out of the running for U.N. ambassador.