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Senate adopts resolution backing free press after Trump attacks

Senate adopts resolution backing free press after Trump attacks

President Donald Trump is lashing out at the press as newspapers nationwide launch a coordinated rebuttal to his attacks against what he calls "fake news".

Trump has faced criticism in recent weeks for his rhetoric towards reporters and other members of the national news media, which he often brands as "fake news" and has recently called an "enemy of the people".

The move comes amid an initiative led by the Boston Globe editorial board in which more than 350 news organizations published editorials promoting the freedom of the press.

US President Donald Trump has tweeted that the "fake news media" is the "opposition party", while calling it "very bad" for the US.

The Boston Globe started the initiative, inviting newspapers across the country to stand up for journalists with articles on Thursday.

It condemned "attacks on the institution of the free press" and said the Senate "views efforts to systematically undermine the credibility of the press as a whole as an attack on our democratic institutions".

The New York Times wrote: "If you haven't already, please subscribe to your local papers", it said.

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The resolution also affirmed that the "press is not the enemy of the people". In true Trump style, he followed that up by saying "we are winning" the fight. "But insisting that truths you don't like are "fake news" is risky to the lifeblood of democracy".

Trump responded to the editorials, tweeting Thursday that the Globe is "in collusion with other papers on free press" and that much of the media is "pushing a political agenda". They also wrote that it is "un-American" and "dangerous" to label the media the enemy of the people. Criticizing the news media - for underplaying or overplaying stories, for getting something wrong - is entirely right.

"This is one of the many lies that have been thrown out by this president, much like an old-time charlatan threw out "magic" dust or water on a hopeful crowd", its editorial, entitled "Journalists are not the Enemy", said.

The San Francisco Chronicle said it would not join the effort because "it plays into Trump's narrative that the media are aligned against him". "These attacks on the press are an attack on our nation's foundation".

Politico's media critic, Jack Shafer, wrote this week that the coordinated editorial response was sure to backfire.

Newspapers from ME to Hawaii have joined the coordinated series of editorials appearing in print and online on Thursday, that speak up for a free and vigorous press.


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