Trump Undermines Female Reporters When Asked About Brett Kavanaugh Case

Geraldine Edwards
October 4, 2018

Trump was addressing the new trade agreement between the U.S., Mexico and Canada in a press conference in the White House Rose Garden when he called on ABC News reporter Cecilia Vega.

"I'm not", Vega said as she prepared to ask Trump a question on the grounds of the White House.

"She's shocked that I picked her. Thank you, Mr. President", and started to ask her question.

He then responded to a question on trade, and she tried once again to bring up the Kavanaugh issue.

"That's okay, I know you're not thinking, you never do", he appeared to say.

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Feinstein had asked for a "clean" bill that would restore the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program without any new funding for Trump's long-promised border wall.

Vega referred obliquely to the exchange on her Twitter account later. Trump said. "I don't mind answering the question".

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) quickly interjected, reminding the president of what the Republican position is supposed to be, but just as important, if you relied on the White House transcript to learn what was said, you missed a key detail: the president's "Yeah, I would like to do that" line was missing from the official White House transcript. Vega hasn't commented on the interaction specifically, but did tweet, "A news conference means you get to ask whatever question you want to ask".

Others said they were going to make an apology in the absence of one from the President. "Mr. President, just to wrap up, do you promise to release the Federal Bureau of Investigation report'".

The comment came during a Monday morning press conference, where the president also ranted more generally generally about the media - a group of people he has consistently cast in an adversarial light.

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Mr Trump also said it was "very unfair" to discuss Mr Kavanaugh's teenage habits, saying there have been "no bad reports" about him for a quarter century. Do you have a question on trade?

He ignored her and moved on to another reporter's question.

Since the beginning of 2017, the Trump administration has set an unprecedented record of treating journalism with blatant disregard and disdain. Government broadcast producers had left the reporter's microphone muted while a Russian-to-English translator delivered Putin's answer to his previous question. "You know what? You've had enough".

When the White House distributed a transcript of the meeting to media contacts, the line was different, with an incongruous "thanking" substituted for "thinking". "I'd be a mess".

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