President Donald Trump was caught on a hot mic prior to his press conference on Friday, inviting members at his golf club in New Jersey to watch his upcoming news briefing, calling journalists his “killers,” CNN Chief White House Correspondent Jim Acosta reported.
“You’ll get to meet the fake news tonight,” the president said, according to a tweet from Acosta, who was present at the New Jersey briefing.
“You’ll get to see what I have to go through,” Trump continued.
“Who’s there?” Trump added, according to Acosta. “Oh all my killers are there, wow. So you’ll get to see some of the people that we deal with every day.”
Before news conf Trump was caught on a hot mic telling people at club…”You’ll get to meet the fake news tonight. You’ll get to see what I have to go through. Who’s there? Oh all my killers are there, wow. So you’ll get to see some of the people that we deal with every day”
— Jim Acosta (@Acosta) August 8, 2020
Photographs shared by reporters had shown many mask-less golf club members among the audience, though a reporter at the golf club later said the on-lookers were provided masks before the news conference began.
When a reporter asked the president about the crowd’s lack of masks or social distancing prior to the event, attendees standing behind members of the press began to boo the reporter.
Trump told the reporter that the attendees who were at the club without a mask were participating in a “peaceful protest.”
“No, they don’t have to — this is political activity,” he said. “You’re wrong at that because they have exceptions for political activity, and it’s also a peaceful protest.”