Reporters can no longer enter Donald Trump’s Washington D.C. hotel – at least until the inauguration.
Much like his love affair with Russia, the billionaire’s tumultuous relationship with “dishonest media” is no secret at all.
On several occasions, the president-elect has opined his distrust towards publications who dare to report the imperative facts that he wants to remain untouched.
Trump has publicly threatened to sue The New York Times and other media outlets for giving coverage to his alleged sexual assault victims, blasted CNN as “fake news” and got into a shouting match with the network’s senior White House correspondent, Jim Acosta, prohibiting him from asking a question at his press conference.
He also called BuzzFeed a “failing pile of garbage” for publishing an unverified dossier that claimed Russian spies had blackmail-worthy personal and financial material on the U.S. president-elect.
During his presidential campaign, the former reality TV star also talked about curtailing the First Amendment because it offers “too much protection” to free speech and recommended that America move to a system more like the U.K. – where people who sue media agencies have “a good chance of winning.”
Now, with just days before he takes office as the 45th President of the United States, Trump has reportedly banned reporters from entering the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C. where scores of business executives, allies, aides and government and foreign officials are staying ahead of the Jan. 20 ceremony.
Patricia Tang, the hotel’s director of sales and marketing, told Politico “media is not allowed in this week in respect of the privacy of our guests.”
The comment came after reporter Daniel Lippman tried to visit the hotel to have breakfast and was denied entry.
I tried to have breakfast at the Trump Hotel in DC w/ friends. But bc I'm a journalist, I was banned from going in: https://t.co/QkfTdQnezF— Daniel Lippman (@dlippman) January 18, 2017
Firstly, the media ban paints a worrisome picture of how Trump Administration will treat reporters during the next four years. Will they continue to humiliate and ridicule journalists as they have so far been doing?
This is not how democracy works.
Secondly, under D.C. legal code, it is “unlawful discriminatory practice” to refuse “any person the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodations of any place of public accommodations” based on “political affiliation [or] source of income.”
Also, as the Raw Story reported, since the Trump Organization developed the hotel in the government-owned Old Post Office building, the lease requires the real estate developer to “allow individuations to enter the premises to tour the historically and architecturally significant portions” of the site.
Meanwhile, a video posted online shows Donald Trump arriving at the hotel on Wednesday amid cheers and applause. Apparently, the president-elect’s motorcade had managed to ditch the press earlier in the day.
Thumbnail/Banner Credits: Reuters