The Trump administration gave TruNews, an anti-Semitic far-right outlet, official credentials to cover the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, the White House Correspondents’ Association confirmed on Wednesday.
TruNews, led by founder Rick Wiles, broadcast from the site on Monday.
“We just want to thank President Trump and the White House for extending the invitation to be here,” Wiles told his audience. “Your TruNews team was sitting in the audience, very close to the stage. We got to see the president up close, hear the entire speech, and we’re again just honored that we are here. The White House has treated all of the media with a lot of respect and professionalism and courtesy.”
Right Wing Watch first reported Wiles’ presence at the event earlier on Wednesday.
The WHCA, which “does *NOT* make credentialing decisions,” has since said it is “raising this issue with the [White House],” CNN’s Jake Tapper noted.
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) also criticized the decision. “Now TruNews is at the WEF in Davos on press credentials from the White House. Unacceptable is an understatement,” CEO Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted.
TruNews has a long history of rabidly anti-Semitic content. In November, Wiles referred to the effort to impeach Donald Trump as a “Jew coup.”
“This ‘impeach Trump’ effort is a Jew coup and the American people better wake up to it really fast because this thing is moving now toward a vote in the House and then a trial in the Senate,” Wiles told his viewers.
Wiles also said, “This is a coup led by Jews to overthrow the constitutionally elected president of the United States and it’s beyond removing Donald Trump, it’s removing you and me. That’s what’s at the heart of it.”
Despite repeated anti-Semitic content, TruNews has frequently received official credentials to cover the Trump White House and one of its correspondents was called on by Trump to ask questions at a press event in 2018.
By contrast, the Trump administration has previously denied credentials to correspondents from legitimate news outlets.
Last year, Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank, who has reported on multiple administrations, had his pass revoked by the Trump team. The White House cited new rules limiting access to reporters “physically present at the White House for … 90 or more days in a 180-day window of time.”
Before that, the Trump White House revoked press credentials for CNN reporter Jim Acosta after he repeatedly asked Trump challenging questions. Acosta’s credentials were restored after CNN took the administration to court.
The administration has limited press access more broadly by canceling daily White House press briefings. Current White House Press Secretary Stephanie Grisham has never held a briefing, and the last briefing was 317 days ago, on March 11, 2019.
The latest controversy comes on the heels of the revelation that senior White House aide Stephen Miller, the architect of the administration’s draconian immigration measures, promoted white supremacist literature and bigoted ideas on multiple occasions.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.