Trump Calls Out Media 'Criminals' Over Hunter Biden Story

Donald Trump Sunday, Oct. 4, 2020, in his conference room at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.
(Image credit: Official White House Photo by Tia Dufour)

The President continues his campaign trail attacks on his perceived enemies as polls show him far behind and in danger of being on the wrong end of a lopsided election.

In remarks after his arrival in Arizona Monday (Oct. 19), President Trump called journalists criminals for not reporting that his opponent, Joe Biden, was also a criminal.

Trump was in the state for more campaign rallies, which have been characterized by lots of attacks on Biden and not much social distancing.

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Asked why his campaign strategy seemed to be to call Biden a "criminal," Trump said that was because Biden WAS a criminal. Then he aimed his attack at the reporter and the media in general. "Read his laptop [that would be Biden's son Hunter], adding: And you know who's a criminal? You're criminal for not reporting it.

When the reporter pressed him for the strategy behind the attacks, Trump simply repeated the charge: "Let me tell you something: Joe Biden is a criminal, and he's been a criminal for a long time. And you're a criminal, and the media, for not reporting it."

Related: FCC Will Clarify Sec. 230

There were reports the Administration might file some type of lawsuit against Big Tech related to their Section 230 immunity from civil liability over third-party content, immunity the President wants to eliminate because he says Silicon Valley uses it to censor Republicans and favor Democrats.

When told that his chief of staff, Mark Meadows, indicated a suit could be forthcoming, the President seemed surprised--"Who said that? Who said that?" he asked, then shifted gears. He said Big Tech had been given great protection, then used that shield to take down links to the New York Post story on Hunter Biden, a paper he said was a respected news outlet.

Asked again about whether a lawsuit was coming, Trump would only say: "You'll be seeing very soon."

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.