Speaking his truth. Donald Trump said in an interview on Wednesday, March 15, that he might not have been elected without the help of social media.
"I think that maybe I wouldn't be here if it wasn’t for Twitter because I get such a fake press, such a dishonest press," the former reality TV star, 70, told Fox News host Tucker Carlson after he was asked whether he talks to anyone before he posts on Twitter.
The real estate mogul has become the subject of ridicule on Saturday Night Live and late-night talk shows for his early-morning tweets taking aim at everyone from Snoop Dogg to his successor on Celebrity Apprentice, Arnold Schwarzenegger, in addition to making as-yet-unsubstantiated claims that former president Barack Obama tapped phones at Trump Tower in the lead-up to the November 2016 election.
Trump took another swipe at Schwarzenegger during his interview on Wednesday, along with TV networks that he has dubbed "fake news."
"If you look at CNN and if you look at these other networks, NBC, I made a fortune for NBC with The Apprentice. I had a top show where they were doing horribly, and I had one of the most successful reality shows of all time. I made … and I was on for 14 seasons. And you see what happened when I'm not on. You saw what happened to the show, it was a disaster. I was on — I was very good to NBC, and I — they are despicable. They're despicable in their coverage. CBS, ABC, you take a look at what's going on. I call it the fake press, the fake media. It is a disgrace what's happening."
The president and NBC's recent history is acrimonious, with the network cutting ties with Trump in June 2015 and dumping the businessman's Miss USA and Miss Universe pageants after he announced his candidacy for president with a rambling speech in which he stated that Mexico is "sending" rapists, drug dealers and criminals over the border to the U.S.
Trump told Carlson on Wednesday that his Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts enable him to have his "own form of media."
"When I say things, the press doesn't cover it accurately," he claimed. "There's a lot of fake news. So if I'm not going to, if they're not going to do me the honor and the public the honor of spreading my word accurately as it was meant, and you know exactly what I'm talking about, because there's been nobody in history that got more dishonest media than I’ve gotten."
"So, when I can reach, whether it’s 90 million or 100 million or 80 million, however many people it may turn out to be," Trump continued. "When you add everything up — and then, of course, it gets disseminated from there — when I can reach that many people, Twitter is a wonderful thing for me, because I get the word out."
As for whether anyone vets his tweets, the president added, "Sometimes I'll have something and say, 'What do you think about this?' A lot of time my staff comes to me and says, 'Can you do a tweet about this or that because it's not being shown correctly' … I might not be here talking to you right now as president if I didn't have an honest way of getting the word out."
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