CNN's Jake Tapper explains how Trump's war on the press compares with Obama's fight against Fox News

Jake Tapper talks a free press with Seth Meyers
(Image credit: Late Night)

Last week, after CNN reported that top U.S. intelligence officials had presented President-elect Donald Trump with unverified claims that Russia has compromising personal and financial material on him, Trump and his press aides attacked CNN as "fake news" and conflated its report with BuzzFeed's publication of the entire raw Russia dossier. The BuzzFeed dossier was "pretty salacious," Seth Meyers reminded CNN's Jake Tapper on Monday's Late Night, with "obviously some details that comedy shows were really happy to read," but for CNN and other news organizations, "this must be a crazy time."

Meyers noted that Tapper used to be a White House reporter like CNN's Jim Acosta, who was berated by Trump and his designated press secretary, Sean Spicer. "Do you feel as though you're under attack, being a member of the press right now?" he asked. Tapper said he's been yelled at by presidents and press secretaries from both parties, "but I've never seen the effort to delegitimize an organization for a story that you don't like that has been proven," like CNN's Trump story, 100 percent accurate. Trump "was obviously trying to get us to stop focusing on the story, and just to discredit all of us," Tapper said. "And you know, that's too bad — it's not a huge shock that he would try to do that."

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Peter Weber, The Week US

Peter has worked as a news and culture writer and editor at The Week since the site's launch in 2008. He covers politics, world affairs, religion and cultural currents. His journalism career began as a copy editor at a financial newswire and has included editorial positions at The New York Times Magazine, Facts on File, and Oregon State University.