Trump at CPAC: Media Shouldn't Be Allowed to Use Unnamed Sources

Trump rips into media and so-called 'fake news' in fiery speech to annual conservative conference.

U.S. President Donald Trump addresses the American Conservative Union's annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland. U.S., February 24, 2017.
KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS

U.S. President Donald Trump said that media reports based on unnamed sources – a common practice in journalism – should not be allowed. Continuing to rail against classic news media and what he called "fake news," the U.S. president floated the idea at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

“I’m against the people who make up stories and make up sources. They shouldn’t be allowed to use sources unless they use somebody’s name. [Then] you will see stories dry up like you have never seen before,” he said, though he himself as used such sources to back his own claims.

Regarding so-called fake news, he said media “doesn’t represent the people”, citing his own election victory as proof: “Our victory was a win like nobody has ever seen before.”

Regarding his own reference to a non-existent incident in Sweden, reportedly based on a Fox report on a documentary, Trump seemed reluctant to admit his error, and instead said that though "he loves Sweden," no one was reporting on the crises allegedly caused by its immigration policy. "Take a look at what's happening in Germany in France," he said.

Trump to CPAC: Media shouldn't be allowed to use unnamed sources New York Times

Praising “border security,” Trump said “foreign terrorists will not be able to strike America if they can’t get in to America.” He vowed to "keep radical Islamic terrorists the hell out of our country," though, according to data and reports, no attack in America has been attributed to persons originating from the countries named in Trump’s travel ban. 

Trump vowed to make America's military stronger, saying the army was now fleshing out a plan “to totally obliterate ISIS [and] eradicate this evil from the face of the earth." 

He also reiterated some of his campaign promises, vowing to repeal Obama's flagship health care reform, and also boasted that his planned border wall with Mexico was “going to start soon – way ahead of schedule,” though no clear time table has yet been set out.

Trump also said that his immigration restrictions were working out and helping to keep "bad people" out.

'Eight years of Trump'

Vice President Mike Pence said Trump's victory provided the nation with what could be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to install conservative solutions to the nation's problems.

"This is the chance we've worked so hard, for so long, to see. This is the time to prove again that our answers are the right answers for America," Pence said at the event.

Earlier, Trump adviser Steve Bannon made his case for a governing strategy based on aggressive deregulation and an "economic nationalism" in negotiating new free trade deals.

Many in the audience chanted "Trump! Trump! Trump!" as Bannon, a provocateur and outsider, and Reince Priebus, a GOP party insider, made a joint appearance onstage. The duo's chummy joint interview seemed designed to refute media reports that the two are working at cross-purposes in a factionalized White House.

Priebus presented their partnership as evidence that conservatives and Trump supporters can work together.

"The truth of the matter is Donald Trump, President Trump, brought together the party and the conservative movement," he said. "If the party and the conservative movement are together, similar to Steve and I, it can't be stopped."