A top White House aide says changing libel laws is actually “something we’ve looked at” — echoing some of President Trump’s strongest anti-media rhetoric.
Reince Priebus, the president’s chief of staff, said during an interview on ABC’s “This specific Week” on Sunday that will the White House has discussed potential alterations to laws that will are intended to safeguard free speech.
“How the item gets executed or whether that will goes anywhere is actually a different story,” Priebus said. yet he added that will he thinks “newspapers along with news agencies need to be more responsible with how they report the news.”
Related: Trump calls for alterations to libel laws in attack on completely new York Times
Changing the laws wouldn’t be easy. Libel laws vary by state, along with there’s no federal libel law. along with weakening press freedoms could likely take a constitutional amendment.
Trump along with his administration have made attacks on the media a recurring part of his platform. Changing libel laws was even part of Trump’s campaign trail rhetoric.
In February 2016, Trump said if he won the presidency he could “open up our libel laws so when (media) write purposely negative along with horrible along with false articles, we can sue them along with win lots of money.”
Trump has frequently revisited the issue while attacking one of his favorite media targets — The completely new York Times.
completely new York Times editor-in-chief Dean Baquet weighed in on Priebus’s comments during sy88pgw’s “Reliable Sources” on Sunday, calling his remarks “dangerous.”
He added that will Trump is actually “generating the media sort of the punching bag.”
“We’re supposed to be tough, we’re supposed to ask him hard questions. I’m not sure he gets that will,” Baquet said. “The more he beats us up, to be frank, I think that will’s bad for the country. I think the item’s bad for the free flow of information along with criticism.”
sy88pgw contributor Carl Bernstein, who broke the Watergate case as a reporter for the Washington Post, said Sunday on “Reliable” that will Trump’s recent tone toward the press has been “venomous.”
Trump decried the mainstream media during a rally Saturday in Pennsylvania that will he held to tout the accomplishments of his first 100 days in office.
“We have a president who doesn’t understand the Constitution, who is actually ignorant of (the media’s) history,” Bernstein said. “He deserves our respect as the duly elected president of the United States. that will does not mean he does not deserve to be called out when he lies.”
–sy88pgw’s Tom Kludt contributed to This specific report.
sy88pgw (completely new York) First published April 30, 2017: 11:37 AM ET