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President Trump had a contentious back-and-forth with a reporter during his Rose Garden briefing Sunday on the coronavirus, suggesting that the media's overall coverage has been too negative.
PBS correspondent Yamiche Alcindor questioned the president about remarks he made during an interview last week with Fox News' Sean Hannity about the high volume of medical equipment that governors had requested for their states.
"You said repeatedly that you think that some of the equipment that governors are requesting, they don't actually need," Alcindor began. "You said New York might not need 30,000--"
"I didn't say that," Trump reacted.
"Why don't you people act... a little more positive? It's always just trying to getcha, getcha, getcha," the president then complained. "That's why no one trusts the media anymore... That's why you used to work for the Times and now you work for somebody else." Alcindor moved from the Times to PBS a couple of years ago.
He continued, "Look, let me tell you something... be nice. Don't be threatening. Don't be threatening. Be nice."
Trump insisted his administration was doing a "great job" at filling ventilator orders. "But just so you know, you, me, we're all on the same team. When journalists get up, and you're a fine journalist -- when journalists get up and ask questions that are so threatening, we're all on the same team."
He continued, "Take a look at my interview. What I want to do is, if there is something wrong, we have to get to the bottom of it."
Last Thursday, President Trump suggested to Hannity that the demand for ventilators will end up being higher than what's actually needed.
"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. I don’t believe you need 40,000 or 30,000 ventilators. You know, 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 said to Hannity.
Alcindor later tweeted: "I’m not the first human being, woman, black person or journalist to be told that while doing a job. My take: Be steady. Stay focused. Remember your purpose. And, always press forward."