Kimmel asks Spicer: Is it 'a dangerous thing to delegitimize' the press?

Jimmy Kimmel pressed former White House press secretary Sean Spicer late Wednesday on whether President Trump's attacks on the credibility of the press are dangerous.

"It seems that what [President Trump] calls fake news is really anything that criticizes him," said the ABC late-night host.

"And then he'll give validity to wacky news sources sometimes. Because they're complimentary. Do you think that is a dangerous thing to delegitimize the press for America?" Kimmel asked.


"I think it's a two-way street. And when these guys in the press corps go after the president in ways that are unbecoming — again, it's sort of like what your mom said, two wrongs don't make a right," said Spicer, who spent six rollercoaster months in the White House.

"I think sometimes when the press corps attacks the president, undermines him, calls into question his credibility from the outset, I think it creates a very poor relationship overall," he continued.

"And I think that there is some area that could deserve a reset. Hopefully, I think Sarah [Huckabee Sanders] has done a phenomenal job of really trying to take the tone down and get back."

Spicer's briefings had proved to be ratings gold for the cable news networks, even beating soap operas like "The Bold and the Beautiful" and "General Hospital" on broadcast networks CBS and ABC.

Those briefings, carried live by the major cable news networks Fox News, CNN and MSNBC, at one point delivered an average of 4.3 million viewers just a few weeks after the administration took office, according to Nielsen data.

Statistics showed that across Fox, CNN and MSNBC, audiences jumped by an average of 10 percentage points when Spicer appeared on screen for the briefings.

The 45-year-old Navy reservist and former Republican National Committee spokesman officially left the White House on Aug. 31.