Surprise! Our very kind president is once again attempting to sully the name of the hard-working journalists who dare to criticize his ways—this time in the presence of Vladimir Putin, complete with vague death threats and, yes, chuckling.
At Friday’s G20 Summit in Osaka, Japan, Trump was recorded openly lambasting journalists with Putin, among other things.
“Get rid of them,” Trump was heard saying to Putin. “Fake news is a great term, isn’t it? You don’t have this problem in Russia, but we do.”
“We also have,” Putin responded. “It’s the same.”
It may sound like just another harmless jab at the media from Trump (whose contentious relationship with the press cannot be overstated), but with Putin in the room, the context certainly changes. Putin’s regime has murdered multiple members of the press, and Trump joking around about “getting rid of” journalists with a man who all but certainly ordered some of those killings is wildly insensitive at best.
The meeting also involved a moment where Trump turned to Putin with a smirk, and wagged his finger while he uttered, “don’t meddle,” in reference to the upcoming 2020 U.S. presidential election.
Here’s to 2020.