Trump administration officials excluded wire service reporters from Donald Trump’s dinner with North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un after two of the reporters asked awkward questions about denuclearization and Michael Cohen at an earlier photo op. North Korean reporters, who can be relied on not to ask questions, were allowed at the dinner, while U.S. reporters had to protest to get any print reporters at all included.
The White House cited “sensitivities over shouted questions” in excluding the reporters, which could sound like catering to a dictator’s delicate sensibilities—bad enough—but the sensitivities in question are most likely Trump’s own. The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman notes that it’s the “Same two reporters who asked questions Trump didn’t like in Helsinki during Putin joint press conference.”
And in a typically juvenile move, “While the WH punished reporters for asking Trump questions, Trump reveled in the attention of the print photographers allowed into the dinner spray, asking Doug Mills to send him photos so he could share them with Kim,” the Los Angeles Times’ Eli Stokols tweets.