Flake defends free press from Trump's attacks

Flake defends free press from Trump's attacks

Flake had promised to speak out against Trump's "reckless, outrageous and undignified" behavior when he announced in October that he would retire at the end of the year.

"So powerful is the presidency that the damage done by the sustained attack on the truth will not be confined to the president's time in office".

She continued: "He is not criticising the president because he is against oppression, he is criticising the president because he has bad poll numbers and he is, I think, looking for some attention".

U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) condemned Trump's "fake news" obsession on Wednesday. On social media, the president has attacked Flake's stance on immigration, and Flake published a book condemning Trump's brand of politics.

Flake spoke on the floor Wednesday to criticize the way Trump handles the press, comparing Trump to infamous Soviet Union dictator Josef Stalin.

Mr Flake said the president's "fake news" rhetoric had "inspired dictators and authoritarians" around the world, citing examples of when the words had been used to dismiss serious allegations.

"Together we have it within us to turn back these attacks, to right these wrongs and fix this damage and restore reverence for institutions and prevent further moral vandalism", he said.

Speaking to reporters, Ms Huckabee Sanders said the president wanted a budget deal, but accused the Democrats of "holding the military and national security hostage" in order to secure their own priorities.

President Trump finally reveals winners of his 'Fake News Awards'
McCain's op-ed lands ahead of Trump's so-called " Fake News Awards ", an event he invented and has been promoting on Twitter . Rounding out the top five was the Washington Post for their report that a Trump rally in Florida was almost empty.

Flake was foolish to hand his own critics a cudgel by invoking Stalin, knowing that they'd harp on that to distract his audience from his larger message, but in a sense he went easy on Trump.

Trump himself appears to be one of these people.

"I'm afraid once again, that his actions will cast a shadow over our constitutional commitment to the basic freedoms we enjoy in America", he said.

"I am in no way comparing President Trump to Joseph Stalin", Flake told CNN International's Christiane Amanpour. Kelli Ward, said in a statement that the comparison to Stalin was "appalling" and "an embarrassment" to the state. It's wall-to-wall with biased coverage against @POTUS.

The conservative's comments were reinforced by his fellow Arizona Republican, Senator John McCain, who warned in an opinion piece in the Washington Post that Mr Trump's efforts to undermine the press's credibility are "being closely watched by foreign leaders who are already using his words as cover as they silence and shutter one of the key pillars of democracy".

In fact we pointed out that Trump - while missing the mark in his response to the press - had every right to be frustrated by its increasingly transparent bias. "You've gone too far".

A handful of aides and Senate pages also milled around and roughly three dozen Capitol visitors sat in the box above the Senate floor watching silently.

On Tuesday, he tweeted that the media "never likes covering the great and record setting economic news, but rather talks about anything negative or that can be turned into the negative".

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