In a press availability in advance of his trip to Texas and the southern border whose security has become a political flashpoint, the President said that NBC's reporters "may be the most dishonest of all time."
That came after an overnight tweet when the President called media outlets "the opposition party."
The President is unhappy with coverage of his decision to walk out of a meeting with congressional Democrats Wednesday after they signaled they were not going to provide funding for the concrete wall or steel barrier the President wants, and says many others do as well.
The President was calling "a lot of the media" the "opposition party" and "fake news" for reporting that he had walked out and the characterization of the incident by Sen. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) as the President throwing a temper tantrum.
The President said that was a lie, but "you guys report it anyway because you're fake news."
The President was also unhappy with leaks from an off-the-record meeting with network anchors. "Who would believe how bad it has gotten with the mainstream media, which has gone totally bonkers!" the President said.
The President also took the opportunity at his pre-flight press scrum to say that when he said Mexico would pay for the wall/barrier, he did not mean directly, that Democrats "don't care about crime," that he will declare a national emergency and build his wall without Congress if there is no compromise; and that, referring to Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.): "I find China, frankly, in many ways, to be far more honorable than Cryin' Chuck and Nancy. I really do. I think that China is actually much easier to deal with than the opposition party."
The President said he was on the right side of the border issue.
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Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.