Donald Trump’s presidential campaign said that it will not credential reporters for Bloomberg News into campaign events after the media outlet announced a new policy in the wake of co-founder Michael Bloomberg’s entry into the race for the presidential nomination.
Brad Parscale, Trump’s campaign manager, wrote in a statement on Monday that “since they have declared their bias openly, the Trump campaign will no longer credential representatives of Bloomberg News for rallies or other campaign events.”
Parscale was referred to a policy that Bloomberg editor in chief John Micklethwait announced on the day that Bloomberg entered the presidential race last month. He said that Bloomberg News would extend its tradition of not investigating Michael Bloomberg to his Democratic rivals. That did not include Trump, but Micklethwait said that the policy could change if Bloomberg won the nomination.
Micklethwait responded to the Trump campaign policy in a statement in which he said that the “accusation of bias couldn’t be further from the truth.
“We have covered Donald Trump fairly and in an unbiased way since be became a candidate in 2015 and will continue to do so despite the restrictions imposed by the Trump campaign.”
In contrast to The Washington Post, The New York Times, CNN and other outlets, Bloomberg News has not been one of Trump’s frequent targets.
But in his statement, Parscale objected to the Bloomberg News policy as unfair.
“As President Trump’s campaign, we are accustomed to unfair reporting practices, but most news organizations don’t announce their biases so publicly,” he said.
He said that they will determine “whether to engage with individual reporters or answer inquiries from Bloomberg News on a case-by-case basis. This will remain the policy of the Trump campaign until Bloomberg News publicly rescinds its decision.”
Trump himself chimed in later in the day, writing on Twitter that “Mini Mike Bloomberg has instructed his third rate news organization not to investigate him or any Democrat, but to go after President Trump, only. The Failing New York Times thinks that is O.K., because their hatred & bias is so great they can’t even see straight. It’s not O.K.!”
The policy came under criticism from some media critics, including Margaret Sullivan of The Washington Post. She said a problem is that since he launched his campaign, Bloomberg has not said whether he would step away from Bloomberg LP, where he serves as CEO. Sullivan wrote that “Bloomberg could have entirely recused himself from decision-making or influence at the news organization — saying, in effect, ‘cover me like anyone else and do it with journalistic integrity.'”
Megan Murphy, Bloomberg’s former Washington bureau chief, wrote on Twitter on Monday, “To think this all could have been avoided had someone just stood up and said, you’re running for President of the United States now. I really think you can handle your own newsroom of immensely talented editors and reporters covering you the same way they do everything else.”
This is not the first time that Trump’s campaign has tried to restrict media outlets from campaign events. In 2016, the Post, Politico and BuzzFeed, among others from covering events, although in many cases reporters just would attend rallies as members of the general audience.
A spokesperson for the Bloomberg campaign did not immediately return a request for comment.
Howard Wolfson, an adviser to the campaign, tweeted about the new Trump policy, “One week in and Mike is already under Trump’s skin.”