President Trump slammed The New York Times on Monday morning over what he called a “false” story claiming he watches up to eight hours of television a day – while taking yet another swipe at CNN and MSNBC.
The tweet came as his administration was dealing with the response to the rush-hour explosion Monday morning in New York City. The president was briefed on the incident, now described as an attempted terrorist attack.
But he soon turned his attention back to his battle with the media that’s been in full swing since last week.
“Another false story, this time in the Failing @nytimes, that I watch 4-8 hours of television a day - Wrong! Also, I seldom, if ever, watch CNN or MSNBC, both of which I consider Fake News. I never watch Don Lemon, who I once called the ‘dumbest man on television!’ Bad Reporting,” Trump tweeted.
The New York Times article detailed Trump’s “hour-by-hour battle for self-preservation,” describing his Twitter habits and how he absorbs the 24/7 news – much of it critical – about his presidency.
The article claimed he spends at least four hours a day, and sometimes twice that, watching television – “eager to fight back.” The story said he sometimes “hate-watches” CNN and especially host Don Lemon.
Trump has been on a media-focused tear for days, in the wake of several high-profile errors regarding reports about his administration and associates.
On Sunday, he called the “Fake News” media “out of control.”
“Major lies written, then forced to be withdrawn after they are exposed...a stain on America!” he tweeted.
Trump’s comments came after a Washington Post reporter tweeted a misleading photo about the crowd size at Friday’s rally in Pensacola, Fla.
In a now-deleted tweet, the Post’s Dave Weigel posted a photo of a half-empty arena to mock Trump for saying the rally was “packed to the rafters.”
But that photo was not taken while Trump was speaking. Trump tweeted photos showing the arena when it was full.
Weigel apologized and deleted the photo.
CNN also had to correct a story that suggested the Trump campaign, including Donald Trump Jr., had been tipped off early about hacked DNC emails from WikiLeaks when it later emerged that the alert was about material already publicly available.
CNN responded, “CNN's initial reporting of the date on an email sent to members of the Trump campaign about Wikileaks documents, which was confirmed by two sources to CNN, was incorrect. We have updated our story to include the correct date, and present the proper context for the timing of email.”
Fox News’ Zoe Szathmary and Brian Flood and The Associated Press contributed to this report.