President Donald Trump shutdown CNN reporter Kaitlan Collins during the White House Coronavirus Task Force briefing on Monday after she repeatedly interrupted the president after he called on another reporter.
“You said when someone is president of the United States, their authority is total,” Collins said. “That is not true. Who told you that?”
“You know what we’re going to do? We are going to write up papers on this,” Trump responded. “It’s not going to be necessary because the governors need us one way or the other because ultimately it comes with the federal government.”
“That being said, we are getting along very well with the the governors and I feel very certain that there won’t be a problem,” Trump continued.
“Has any governor agreed that you have the authority to decide when their state opens?” Collins interrupted after Trump called on another reporter.
“I haven’t asked anybody,” Trump responded. “You know why? Because I don’t need to.”
“But who told you that president has the total authority?” Collins continued to interrupt.
Trump put up his finger and told her, “enough,” and that was the end of the conversation.
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) April 13, 2020
The interaction came after Trump tweeted on Monday morning, “For the purpose of creating conflict and confusion, some in the Fake News Media are saying that it is the Governors decision to open up the states, not that of the President of the United States & the Federal Government. Let it be fully understood that this is incorrect. It is the decision of the President, and for many good reasons. With that being said, the Administration and I are working closely with the Governors, and this will continue. A decision by me, in conjunction with the Governors and input from others, will be made shortly!”
….It is the decision of the President, and for many good reasons. With that being said, the Administration and I are working closely with the Governors, and this will continue. A decision by me, in conjunction with the Governors and input from others, will be made shortly!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2020
The clash between the CNN reporter and Trump came after multiple reporters, including ABC News reporter Jon Karl and CBS News reporter Paula Reid also clashed with Trump after he played a video that highlighted the administration’s response to the coronavirus.
The video, which also highlighted some of the early things that the media said about the coronavirus, featured multiple Democrat governors praising the Trump administration for their work:
- New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D): “His team is on it. They’ve been responsive late at night, early in the morning and they’ve thus far been doing everything they can do and I want to say thank you and I want to say that I appreciate it.
- California Governor Gavin Newsom (D): “He returns calls. He reaches out, he’s been proactive. We could that Mercy ship down here in Los Angeles, that was directly because he sent it down here. 2,000 medical units came to the state of California, these FMS, these field medical stations, and that’s been very, very helpful.
- New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy (D): “We had asked if we could have, if New Jersey could access to a piece of the beds that are on the USNS Comfort and the president came back, called me, assured me a few minutes before I walked in here to say that they would grant that to New Jersey. So that’s big step for us in addition to all the other capacity. I thank the president and vice president who were on the call.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 14, 2020