President TrumpDonald John TrumpWith VP pick, Biden can’t play small ball in a long ball world Coronavirus hits defense contractor jobs Wake up America, your country doesn’t value your life MORE clashed with a reporter on Sunday during a press briefing on the coronavirus outbreak in the Rose Garden.
PBS NewsHour reporter Yamiche Alcindor questioned the president during the briefing about recent comments made by Trump during an interview with Fox News’s Sean HannitySean Patrick HannityOvernight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — US coronavirus cases hit 100,000 | Trump signs T stimulus package | Trump employs defense powers to force GM to make ventilators | New concerns over virus testing Hillary Clinton on US leading in coronavirus cases: Trump ‘did promise “America First”‘ Cuomo pushes back on Trump over ventilators: ‘I operate on facts’ MORE over whether some requests made by governors related to the outbreak were overblown or unnecessary.
Trump responded by first denying that he had made the comments, which were reported by multiple news outlets at the time, before accusing Alcindor of acting “threatening” during the briefing.
“Why don’t you act in a little more positive…it’s always get ya, get ya, get ya,” Trump said to Alcindor. “You know what? That’s why nobody trusts the media anymore.”
“That’s why you used to work for the [New York] Times and now you work for somebody else,” he continued, speaking to Alcindor. “Look, let me tell you something: Be nice. Don’t be threatening.”
— William Kedjanyi (@KeejayOV2) March 29, 2020
Trump has frequently clashed with reporters in public statements and on social media in recent days over his own comments about the coronavirus outbreak, which earlier this year he stressed was under control in the U.S. The United States now has more confirmed cases of the virus than anywhere in the world, including China, where it is thought to have originated.
On Friday, he told Hannity that he doubted the necessity of some requests for assistance by state governors including New York’s Andrew Cuomo (D), who has requested 30,000 ventilators for the state’s hospitals.
“I have a feeling that a lot of the numbers that are being said in some areas are just bigger than they’re going to be,” Trump told the Fox News pundit on Friday. “I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators. You go into major hospitals sometimes, and they’ll have two ventilators. And now, all of a sudden, they’re saying, ‘Can we order 30,000 ventilators?’”
Trump and Alcindor in particular have a history of confrontations at press briefings. Trump repeatedly accused her of asking a “racist” question about his support from African-American voters in 2018.
Earlier this month, Trump again attacked Alcindor during a press briefing after she asked about the dismantling of a pandemic response team that was part of the national security council (NSC), which the president at the time labeled a “nasty” question.