Trump wants agencies to ax NYT, Washington Post subscriptions

The White House claimed it "will be a significant cost-saving for taxpayers." Trump has repeatedly bashed both papers as "fake news."
Image: President Donald J. Trump
President Donald Trump talk to members of the media as he walks to board Marine One at the White House on Oct 10, 2019.Jabin Botsford / The Washington Post/Getty Images

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By Dareh Gregorian and Hallie Jackson

Stop spreading the news.

President Donald Trump plans to direct federal agencies to cancel subscriptions to The New York Times and The Washington Post, outlets he regularly derides as "fake news" for writing critical stories about him, the White House confirmed Thursday.

It's unclear how Trump's plan, which was first reported by The Wall Street Journal, would be carried out or enforced.

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"Not renewing subscriptions across all federal agencies will be a significant cost saving for taxpayers - hundreds of thousands of dollars," White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said in a statement.

It's unclear how many government subscriptions the papers have.

A representative for the Times declined comment.

Washington Post reporters noted on Twitter that their paper offers free digital subscriptions to anyone with a valid .gov or .mil email address.

In an interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity on Monday, Trump said he didn't want either paper available on the White House grounds.

"The New York Times is a fake newspaper. We don’t even want it in the White House anymore. We’re going to probably terminate that and the Washington Post. They’re fake," Trump said, adding that he'd heard he's received worse media coverage than any president besides Abraham Lincoln. "They say he got the worst press of anybody. I say I dispute it."

Trump's campaign, meanwhile, has subscribed to the Times, the Journal and the Post, according to filings with the Federal Election Commission through Sept. 30. The campaign had no immediate comment.

Trump wasn't always so vitriolic about the Times. As president-elect in 2016, he offered warm words for his hometown newspaper, telling its editorial board he considered it "a great, great American jewel, world jewel."

Monica Alba and Adam Reiss contributed.