Donald Trump savages media at Florida rally – BBC News

Trump at Melbourne rally - 18 Feb 2017Image copyright

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Donald Trump said he wanted to speak to Americans “without the filter of fake news”

US President Donald Trump has launched another fierce attack on the media at a “campaign rally for America” event in Florida.

He told the crowd the media did not want “to report the truth” and had their own agenda.

The gathering in Melbourne is similar in style to those Mr Trump held during the election campaign.

It comes off the back of a week in which Mr Trump attacked the media in an aggressive press conference.

His national security adviser Michael Flynn also quit earlier in the week. Mr Trump is to interview candidates for the role on Sunday.

On Saturday, President Trump and his wife Melania were greeted by thousands of supporters at the rally in a state he won in November’s election. Protesters have also promised to line the route to the venue.

In his speech, Mr Trump said he wanted to speak to Americans “without the filter of fake news”.

Describing the media as “dishonest”, he repeated his assertion that some outlets “don’t want to report the truth” and were making up their stories about him.

“We will continue to expose them,” he said, pledging to “win, win, win”.

In his speech, the president also:

  • Repeated his campaign pledge to keep America “safe” and said the country would “have strong borders again”
  • Said Americans would have “a great healthcare plan” and Obama reforms would be repealed
  • Stressed that the White House was running “so smoothly”, dismissing claims that his administration was in disarray

It is unusual for a sitting president to hold a rally in the style of those held during election campaigns.

One supporter, Gene Huber from West Palm Beach, said the decision to hold a rally was not a concern. “No jitters at all,” he told the AFP news agency. “This is a world leader now who’s taking control.”

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Thousands of Mr Trump’s supporters are expected to attend the Melbourne, Florida, rally

Throughout the week, Mr Trump launched attacks on the media while indicating his excitement at facing crowds in Florida again.

On Thursday, he held a 76-minute press conference where he told reporters their level of dishonesty was out of control, citing coverage of his campaign’s alleged contacts with Moscow.

Michael Flynn, Mr Trump’s national security adviser, resigned on Monday after he misled Vice-President Mike Pence about whether he had discussed US sanctions with Russia’s ambassador before his own appointment.

Meanwhile, the New York Times reported earlier this week that members of Mr Trump’s campaign and other Trump associates had repeated contacts with senior Russian intelligence officials in the year before the election.

While in Florida, Mr Trump is staying at his Mar-a-Lago resort for the third weekend in succession. In a tweet, he referred to the property as the “Southern White House”, although the private club is part of Mr Trump’s portfolio and is not government property.

While there, he will interview four candidates for the role of national security adviser, the White House said.


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