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

President TrumpDonald TrumpBiden to sign executive order aimed at increasing voting access Albany Times Union editorial board calls for Cuomo's resignation Advocates warn restrictive voting bills could end Georgia's record turnout 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 RatcliffeFormer Trump officials eye bids for political office Grenell congratulates Buttigieg on becoming second openly gay Cabinet member Senate confirms Biden's intel chief, giving him first Cabinet official 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 ShanahanOvernight Defense: National Guard boosts DC presence ahead of inauguration | Lawmakers demand probes into troops' role in Capitol riot | Financial disclosures released for Biden Pentagon nominee Biden Pentagon pick could make up to .7M from leaving Raytheon Lloyd Austin can lead — as a civilian MORE bowed out as Defense secretary nominee, Stephen MooreStephen MooreAs nation freezes, fossil fuels are keeping the lights and heat on Economist Moore says he's not sure US needs 'massive stimulus bill' Sunday shows - Trump's COVID-19 relief bill opposition dominates MORE and Herman CainHerman Cain'Trumpification' of the GOP will persist '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 MORE pulled out consideration for the Federal Reserve Board and Heather Nauert took herself out of the running for U.N. ambassador.